ithin minutes of posting "what should I make with my peas?" the decision was made. Actually, it was probably (undoubtedly) happening even as I uploaded photos of recipes to consider...
Something in me was calling out for fresh pasta! It has been far, far too long since I indulged in that particular culinary delight.
I have made fresh pasta many times in the past, but never truly settled on a go-to recipe. However, I think the recipe I arrived at will work just fine for the foreseeable future. As most good things go, the seed was planted via Epicurious. Where it went from there... all me!
Makes a dozen mounds of fettucine (enough to feed 6 people)
2 cups flour
1 3/4 cups semolina flour*
5 eggs, lightly beaten
1 tsp salt
4-5 Tbsp water
Put the flour, semolina and salt in the bowl of your food processor. Add the eggs and 3 tablespoons of water and pulse until the dough starts to come together. Add additional water as you pulse, in small amounts, until the dough becomes a ball. (If the dough gets a little too gummy, just add a bit more flour.) Process for another 15 seconds, and then turn out onto a floured cutting board to rest for a half-hour minimum, and up to an hour. (If you don't have a food processor, the original Epicurious recipe has some good tips on mixing by hand.)
Pull off pieces of the dough and roll/pat into long, thick ropes.
Now is where having all the Kitchen Aid with pasta attachments is really handy. (Thanks, husband!) But pre-attachments, I've also rolled out pasta sheets, and that's an entirely workable solution too. So do not despair. Grab your rolling pin and flour up your counter and roll out the long, thick pasta ropes until they are thin (really thin, like just under 1/8 of an inch) and the cut whatever shape you're looking for. I am a fan of the fettucine width when I'm making pasta. That shape is also quite forgiving if you're cutting with a knife, too.
Let the pasta sit on the counter and dry a bit, but it doesn't need much air time before cooking.
Bring a big pot of water to boil. (If you saw my link a couple of weeks back about how much water you need to boil pasta, that does not apply to fresh pasta, apparently.) Add the pasta and cook for 6-7 minutes, checking to see if it has reached your desirable al dente state.
Sauce time! If you're like me, the sauce should usually have cheese and cream. If you're husband, it will probably involve a red sauce with some spicy peppers. In this house, we make both; that's just how we roll. But for the purposes of using up the peas, I will share with you the sauce I threw together: the whole reason for making fresh pasta in the first place!
Peas and cream for one
1/2 cup cream
1/3 cup parmesan
1/4 cup pine nuts
1 cup peas
1 clove garlic, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
Warm the cream in a small saucepan. Drain the cooked pasta and put your desired amount in a medium bowl. Immediately crack open the egg and mix it thoroughly into the hot pasta, followed by the cream, parmesan, pinenuts, peas and garlic, salt and pepper. Stir well and pour out into a pasta bowl or plate and devour! (I did.)
*While most online recipes call for just all-purpose flour, I got the idea in my head years ago that semolina helps make pasta "better," but had to actually go look around to substantiate that notion. At the very least, I like the color and flavor it brings to the dough, and I think it does make the dough easier to work with. Semolina is pretty findable in most grocery stores around Walla Walla, so hopefully you can find it in your neck of the woods too!