A few months ago I graciously received the pasta attachment for the KitchenAid mixer as a gift, but being that I’d never made pasta from scratch before, I felt just a little intimidated to actually take it out of the box. So there it sat in the nether regions of my closet collecting dust just begging to finally be used and I finally decided to push my fears aside give it a try and I’m so happy I did!
To prepare, I watched videos on YouTube and checked out different recipes online, and what I took away from it all is that many pastas are made with the same three basic ingredients: Flour, Water, and Eggs. Some of the things that can differentiate one pasta from another are the amounts of each ingredient used, whether extra ingredients such as Salt or Olive Oil are added, or even how the dough is prepared (by hand or in a food processor).
From watching this cooking video by Laura in the Kitchen, I also first learned of an ingredient known as semolina, which is a finely ground durum wheat that allows the pasta dough to stretch a considerable amount without breaking and achieve that perfect consistency because it has a high percentage of gluten.
For my pasta, I decided to go with half semolina flour and half all-purpose flour, as on the package for the Bob’s Red Mill Semolina that I used, it stated that many people prefer their pasta that way, and it truly turned out better than I imagined.
After placing all of my ingredients in a food processor (because who has time to mix by hand?) I gave it a few pulses and the pasta came together in just a matter of minutes.
And first turning on the pasta machine, I came to realize just how simple it is to use and soon enough I had long sheets of yummy pasta ready to be made into some delicious ravioli.
I kept the filling simple, using just ricotta and parmesan cheeses (with optional spinach), topped it with pesto using this recipe, and I was ready to dig in!
Now that I’ve conquered my fear, homemade pasta will definitely be something I’ll continue making, and I hope you will too, and next time I definitely think I’ll get even more adventurous with what I try! Buon Appetito!
Homemade Ricotta Ravioli
Basic Pasta Recipe
Recipe adapted from Bob’s Red Mill Basic Pasta Recipe
- 3/4 cup Semolina flour
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 2 tablespoons water
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
Recipe credit: Laura in the Kitchen Ravioli Recipe
- 1 3/4 pounds of Ricotta Cheese
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup of grated Parmesan Cheese
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- 1/4 pound fresh spinach (optional)
Basic Pasta Recipe
- Combine 3/4 cup Semolina, 3/4 cup all-purpose flour and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a food processor (you can also use your hands) until just combined.
- Add the beaten eggs, 2 tablespoons water, and 2 tablespoons olive oil and continue to pulse until all of the ingredients are combined.
- Turn dough out onto a floured surface and knead until elastic. Roll into a ball.
- Wrap dough in a towel or plastic bag and allow to rest for 20 minutes.
- On a floured surface, roll ball into a disk and cut into four quarters.
- Take each quarter and flatten enough to fit through your pasta machine’s widest setting and roll into a pasta sheet.
- Continue passing through pasta machine until you’ve acquired your desired thickness.
- Place 1 3/4 pounds ricotta, 1/2 cup of grated Parmesan Cheese, 1 egg, and salt and pepper in a bowl and mix until smooth.
- If you would like to add spinach, first wilt it in a pan with a little olive oil and salt. Remove from heat and allow to cool before adding to ricotta cheese mixture.
- Take one pasta sheet and place a tablespoon of filling, leaving about an inch of space in between each.
- Brush a little water on the edges of the pasta and in between the filling and gently place another sheet of pasta on top making sure that the edges are completely sealed and without air pockets.
- Cut ravioli with either a ravioli cutter, knife, or circular cookie cutters. Place onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and sprinkled with either flour or semolina.
- Fill a large pot with water and salt and boil ravioli until they begin to float.
- Remove, drain, and eat with favorite sauces and toppings.