Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Homemade Pasta Straight From The Garden

Homemade Amaranth and Spinach Fettuccine Drying

I can't believe I never thought about making pasta! You've never really tasted pasta until you've tried homemade.

I've found it to be a whole lot easier than I had imagined. It's also a whole lot of fun when you can make it with stuff you've grown in the garden.

In this batch of fettuccine I used Hopi Red Dye Amaranth that I ground into flour. I also used fresh organic summer spinach that I had growing in the garden.

The combination of the sweet spinach and nutty flavor of the Amaranth turned out to be a perfect duo for the pasta. 

Making A Soft Pasta Dough

My basic recipe for making pasta dough is 3 1/3 cups of organic unbleached flour, a pinch of sea salt and 4 large eggs and a drizzle of Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

For this recipe I used 2 1/2 cups of organic unbleached flour, 1/2 cup of organic whole wheat flour and `/3 cup of Amaranth flour. I steamed about 1 cup of chopped spinach.

 While it cooled I added the sea salt to the flour mixture and whisked it together. Make a well in the middle of the flour and put 4 eggs in the middle of it.

Drizzle your Olive Oil in the middle as well. Squeeze out the liquid from the spinach and put it in the well with your eggs. With your fingers or a fork start lifting the flour from the outer edges towards the middle where your liquid is.

I begin the whole process in a large bowl before I dump in out onto a lightly floured surface.Keep kneading it with your hands until it all becomes mixed well and turns into a nice soft pliable dough ball.

If it seems way to stiff, just drizzle a bit more Olive Oil or you can even add a few drops of warm water to it.

Now cover it with a cotton towel and let it rest for about 20 minutes or so. This will relax the dough and make it easier to roll out.

Dough Is Ready To Roll Through Machine

After the dough has relaxed, I cut it into 4 pieces to make it easier to work with. Leaving 3 of the pieces covered with my towel, I pat the first one until it becomes somewhat flat.

Starting on the thickest setting, which is 7 on my pasta maker, I begin to roll it through. Gradually move the setting down a notch each time you run it through. I work mine until I get to 3 on the machine.

You can take to number 2, but for fettuccine I prefer the setting at 3.

A Nice Thin Strip Of Firm Pasta

At this point if the piece is hard to handle because it might be to long, just cut it in half to get ready to run it through the dough cutter. Your piece does not need to be perfect in shape.

This is homemade pasta and it should look like it as well. So don't fret if every piece is not the same length. It's all going to be wonderful.

Making A Pass Through The Dough Cutter

The pasta machine that I am using is manual. I simply move the handle from the roller and place it in the hole for the cutter I want to use. It's as simple as that.

Hanging The Pasta To Dry

I found an old quilting rack that I had out in the barn. I cleaned it up and it seems to work just perfect.

If you don't have a pasta drying rack you might try hanging it on the back of some kitchen cabinet doors. Just be sure to clean the tops off first. Be creative and find something that will work well for you.

The Pasta maker I am using came from Bed Bath and Beyond and was very reasonably priced. I choose manual when ever possible for many of my gadgets. That way if the electricity is out I can still play.

 After the pasta dries out I place it carefully in ziploc bags for the pantry. It cooks up very nicely in half the time of store bought pasta.

 Drizzle a bit of pesto or tomato sauce and you have a meal. I like to use fresh herbs and garlic from the garden to make an Olive Oil and Balsamic Vinegar dressing to drizzle on top as well. Have fun and eat well!!

Happy Gardening!!


  1. Wow this is amazing. I have never made my own pasta - being far too lazy - but this looks delicious!

  2. I never thought of it either until my garden half became curious about it. So I started reading up on it and now I'm hooked on making it. I've found it to be so fun and quite relaxing. Glad you visited Lesley xxooxx

  3. Magic Blog a feast for the eyes.... GH

  4. Oh my that pasta looks delicious...How long does it keep in the pantry? I think I will try it I have a coupon for BB&B. Thanx Pammy

  5. Hi Lani, It is hard to say how long it will last. Once dried I put it in ziploc bags in the pantry, but we eat it all to fast I think. The longest a batch last before eaten so far has been 4 weeks. ;)