And now for something totally different!
I don’t usually take photos of dinner, they never do the food justice and I don’t often cook with a recipe or measure ingredients. Yesterday I was feeling ambitious and decided to break out the old hand crank pasta maker that’s been collecting dust in my cupboard and the pasta turned out incredible!
(See what I mean, not pretty!)
- 2 1/2 cups flour
- 1 cup semolina flour
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 4 eggs + 1 egg yolk
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tbsp water (add more or less as required)
You can do this on the countertop, I started in the mixing bowl and had to move my dough onto the countertop to be kneaded. Combine the flours and the salt. Make a well in the middle and add the eggs, extra yolk and olive oil. Begin by mixing the eggs and slowly working the flour in them.
Drizzle water as needed until you have a cohesive dough. It will be really tough! Turn the dough onto the countertop and knead the heck out of it! The dough needs to be kneaded for at least 10 minutes, it’s a good workout!
Once the dough is kneaded, it will be smooth but still feel tough. Place the dough under a damp towel and let it rest for 30 minutes.
After the dough’s rested cut it into 8 portions. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough to 1/4 inch thick and begin using the #1 setting on the pasta machine. (OR you may continue with a super workout and roll the dough by hand with the rolling pin)
I rolled the dough through the machine up until the #6 setting.
From this point you can cut the dough into your desired pasta shape. I decided to make Ravioli and Manicotti.
Bacon, Spinach and Ricotta Manicotti (or Raviolli)
- 2 slices bacon, chopped
- 1 bunch of fresh spinach (or 1 box of frozen chopped spinach, defrosted and drained)
- 1 medium onion chopped
- 1 tsp dried Italian seasoning
- 4 cloves of garlic, chopped
- salt and pepper
- 400 grams Ricotta cheese
- tomato based pasta sauce
In a heavy bottom skillet, cook bacon on medium high heat. Once bacon is almost done add the onion and cook until onion is soft and translucent. Add garlic and cook 30 more seconds. Add the spinach to the pot and cook until the spinach has wilted down. Season with Italian seasoning and salt and pepper.
Using a food processor, pulse the spinach mixture 3-4 short pulses. Stir in the Ricotta cheese.
Using a sharp knife, cut the pasta into rectangles. (size is totally up to you!)
Place a few tablespoons of filling on the sheet of pasta. Using a pastry brush (or your fingers) wet the edge of the pasta so it will seal when rolled.
Coat the bottom of a casserole dish with sauce
Roll up the pasta and place it seam side down in a casserole dish leaving a bit of room for expansion.
Cover the top with sauce and cover the casserole dish with tinfoil. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 25-35 minutes removing the tinfoil after 20 minutes.