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How to make fresh pasta

Fancy making your own pasta? No machine required. You can use plain flour to make the pasta, but 00 flour gives it a little more bite. This pasta is called pappardelle, the thick, silky ribbons pair really well with everything - from hearty sauces to a simple pesto.

  1. Mixing eggs and flour

    Tip the flour onto a clean work surface and make a well in the centre; add the eggs, yolks and oil. Use a fork to break the eggs a little, then gently pull the flour into the centre, bit by bit, until all the egg is incorporated.

    Combining the eggs and flour gradually ensures an even-textured dough. Using a mix of eggs, egg yolks and olive oil helps give a soft and pliable dough.

    Gather the dough together and press into a rough ball (it should still feel fairly dry).

    Mixing eggs and flour
  2. Kneading the dough

    Kneading is essential to develop the gluten and give the pasta its texture and structure. Fold over the top of the dough, then use the heel of your hand to press it away. The dough should be smooth and pliable when you have finished.

    Knead the dough for 10 mins. It will be very stiff at this point and hard to work to start with, but it’ll become more pliable as you knead it. The dough is ready when it’s smooth and elastic, not wet or sticky.

    Kneading the dough
  3. Dividing the dough

    Shape the dough into a cylinder about 5-6cm thick. Wrap tightly in clingfilm and rest for 1-3 hrs at room temperature.

    Unwrap the dough, divide into 6 equal pieces, then rewrap 5 and set aside.

    It’s important to work with the pasta in small batches so that it doesn’t dry out. Flatten each piece into a rough rectangle to help with shaping before rolling, and be careful not to add too much flour.

    Dividing the dough
  4. Rolling out the pasta

    Lightly flour the unwrapped piece and roll out into a 20 x 40cm rectangle about 1mm thick, lifting it occasionally to make sure it isn’t sticking. When ready, it should look a little translucent. Ensure all the pasta is rolled to the same thickness, so it all cooks at the same time and isn’t too chewy. Lifting and turning the pasta sheet regularly will ensure it doesn’t stick to the table and has an even thickness.

    Lightly dust a baking sheet with semolina and carefully transfer the pasta sheet to it. Cover loosely with clingfilm, then repeat with the remaining dough, dusting about 1 tsp semolina between each sheet to make sure they don’t stick together.

    Rolling out the pasta
  5. Slicing the sheets

    To cut the pasta, lay 3 sheets on the work surface and loosely fold the dough lengthways into thirds. Using a sharp knife, cut the dough into 1.5cm-thick strips. Gently unroll the strips and loosen with your fingers. Dust with semolina and transfer to a lightly semolina-dusted tray. Cover loosely with clingfilm to stop it drying out; repeat with the remaining pasta.

    Slicing the sheets
  6. Cooking the pasta

    To cook, bring a very large pan of water to the boil and add the salt. It’s important to salt the water, as this helps firm up the pasta. Cook it in batches if you don’t have a large enough pan, as adding too much at once stops it cooking evenly. Cook for 4 mins, working in batches if needed. Drain. Serve with your favourite sauce.

    Cooking the pasta
  7. Ingredients

    Here's all you need to make this marvellous main. Be sure to note down the ingredients or take a screenshot before heading to the shops.

    350g 00 flour
    3 medium eggs, plus 3 egg yolks
    2 tbsp olive oil
    semolina, for dusting
    1 tbsp salt

    Serves 4 | Takes 1 hr 30 mins plus resting

    Each serving contains

    • Energy

    • Fat

      17g 24%
    • Saturates

      4g 19%
    • Sugars

      2g 2%
    • Salt

      1.2g 21%

    of the reference intake
    Carbohydrate 45.6g Protein 15.3g Fibre 2.3g