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  • Anïsa Lewis

Pasta Pandemonium


Beautiful, tender homemade pasta!

Recipes:

Basic Pasta:

2 Cups All Purpose Flour

3 Eggs

2 Tbs Olive Oil

Put flour into a mound on a flat surface and make a hole in the middle. Add eggs and olive oil into the middle of the hole. Whisk the eggs and olive oil together and slowly combine the wet and dry ingredients until you have a kind of loose but stiff dough. Knead by hand (or by electric mixer) for 5-10 minutes until well combined. Form into a ball, cover in plastic wrap and let it rest for about an hour. Then you can cut it into four pieces and form it into whatever pasta you want. Use the same method for all of the pasta recipes below!


Vegan Pasta via AllRecipes:

2 cups semolina flour

1/2 cup water

1/2 tsp salt


Super Delicious Semolina Pasta :


1 pound (about 2 3/4 cups) semolina flour

12 ounces (about 2 1/4 cups) all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup water

4 egg yolks

2 tablespoons pure olive oil


Butternut Squash Ravioli Filling:

1 cup of roasted butternut squash

1/2 cup shredded parmesan

1 tsp sage

1 egg

1 tsp herbs de Provence


Wine Braised Pot Roast:


2 lb chuck roast

1 1/2 cups dry red wine

1 fresh sprig of thyme or 1/3-1/2 tsp of dried

1 fresh sprig of rosemary or 1/3-1/2 tsp of dried

1/2 cup flour

4 tbs olive oil

1 TBS Worcestershire sauce

1 1/2-2 cups beef broth

One large onion sliced

4-5 garlic cloves smashed lightly

Kosher salt & pepper to taste

1 cup of mushrooms (I used white button, but baby bellas, portabellas, etc would be delicious here!)

1 cup of frozen peas

Toss the roast in the flour until covered. Heat a pan, cast iron if you have it, on medium and add olive oil. Sear the roast on all sides until golden. Place roast into crock pot. Add onions, garlic, herbs, salt, pepper, Worcestershire, beef broth and wine. Cook on low for about 8 hours until tender. The liquid in the pot should be thickened. If not, you can thicken it up by making a flour slurry and adding it into roast's liquid. Add the peas when the roast is done and let them sit on the warm setting for 30 minutes and I promise you they will be the bomb.

This recipe is great for the ravioli or if you just want some warm mashed potatoes with it!


Horseradish Sauce:


3 Tbsp prepared horseradish

1/4 cup sour cream

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 Tbsp Greek Yogurt (Most people would use mayo, but I don't mess with that stuff)

1 Tbsp chopped chives

1/2 Tbsp chopped garlic


Basically, mix all to combine. I didn't add salt because the Dijon and horseradish had enough salt in them, but salt if you must.


*******

Now that we've gotten the recipes out of the way, I want to let you know that basic pasta making is not hard. It is super easy, even when you don’t have a pasta maker to help you make delicious sheets of pasta.

I’ve done a lot of research on pasta making since last year when I was stuck in the house like everyone else! The super simple recipes that I found most useful used this ratio:

  • 2 Cups All Purpose Flour

  • ¾ Cups of Liquid (usually 3 eggs and 2 tbs of olive oil)

I know your pantry is poppin' now after the pantry makeover series, so you probably have all purpose flour, eggs and salt at least. The classic way would be to mix the dry ingredients (I added 1tsp of salt), place them on a solid surface, then make a little hole in the middle for the eggs and olive oil. I use a bowl each time now because, as you can see, I’m a mess. I'm glad I had the foresight to use parchment paper.



Lightly whisk the wet ingredients together in the little hole you made with a fork, then mix by hand until it starts coming together. Knead it for about five to ten minutes. I did that the first time I made pasta. The first time I made it, I was in a bad mood, so the kneading part was a catharsis of sorts.

The most recent time that I made pasta, I saved time and my knuckles and used my Kitchen Aid mixer. I don’t have the fancy pasta rolling attachment, though, so I let the dough rest for an hour. I then divided it into four parts and rolled it out with my rolling pin by hand as thin as I could get it. You can totally use a wine bottle if you don’t have a rolling pin! Afterward, I folded it together like a letter going into an envelope and cut it into fettuccine. When cooking it, it only takes about a minute and a half to al dente! It was pretty good this way, and I was really impressed with myself!



Want to hear a tragic story, though?

During the holidays, I decided to make some semolina pasta ravioli. I had some semolina flour that was hanging out in the pantry for months because I was so intimidated by it! I don’t know why. The best reason to use semolina flour in your pasta is because the gluten is stronger and you can shape the pasta better. I made the usual fettuccine with it at first and had it with scallops in a mushroom vermouth sauce. I used this recipe for the vermouth sauce!

Basically a Coquilles St. Jacques Pasta!

The pasta came out tender and delicious, and that sauce was amazing! And I had dough left over for New Year’s Eve that I should have put in the freezer (your dough will change to a darker color if left alone for a bit. It’s still good, but be prepared to see a change if you don’t cook it right away).

I planned on making a special treat: Wine braised pot roast over roasted sage butternut squash and ricotta ravioli! What a fantastic treat to have while ringing in 2021 after the shit year we just had, right?

I used a pretty fantastic bourbon barrel aged cabernet to cook the pot roast in the night before New Year's Eve:

It was pretty tasty to drink, too. It's from Aldi!

The pot roast would have been pretty fabulous on its own, actually. I floured it, seared it in olive oil on all sides, then tossed it in the crock pot and cooked it until it was tender and a nice gravy formed in the pot.

The next day, I roasted a small butternut squash that we had left over from the garden. I sliced it in half, drizzled with about two tbs of olive oil and seasoned it lightly with salt and pepper. I roasted it at 375 for about an hour (I know it seems long, but it came out *perfect*).


When you roast it for that long, it gets all brown and caramelized and you can scoop the delicious, deep orange flesh right from the skin and straight into your mouth, but that’s not what I did this time. Because ravioli.

I turned it into a filling instead! I used my food processor, but of course, you can mix this by hand in a large bowl with a wooden spoon and some mild elbow grease. Follow the recipe at the beginning of the blog, but OMG.


Ricotta, butternut squash, sage, herbs de Provence, parmesan and one egg

I was super confident y'all. I was so excited to make these raviolis that I forgot to take the initial pictures. So the only picture I got of my first batch of the butternut squash ravioli is right here:


They fell. Onto. The floor. A tragedy. Even my dog Pete, who, as a dog, should have been elated that I made this mistake, judged me for dropping the raviolis onto the floor.

"I can't believe you did that..."

I had to take a minute...I mean everybody makes mistakes. It's so easy to make cooking mistakes. I've made them so often that it actually helped me become a better cook. Because of mistakes (and sometimes making the exact same mistake multiple times), I know what not to do in a lot of situations. You know what, though? Jump back onto the saddle and do it again, says I! So I did!



It pretty much worked out. That's a horseradish sauce on top! The end result was pretty tasty. The filling was nice and creamy and that pot roast was so delicious and savory. I liked the fettuccini that I made much better, though. So I'm going to try making raviolis again!


The moral of this story: "Pasta isn't that hard when you don't drop it on the floor" or "Fuck around and find out."





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