PERFECT PASTA-Making Dough



Perfect Pasta
There may be no other food in the world as ubiquitous, versatile, and well loved as pasta. A basic, healthy food made from simple, everyday components it is capable of standing alone or taking on a wealth of other flavours. For centuries, pasta has been a staple part of the diet of numerous cultures throughout the world.
Some people are unnecessarily intimidated by making fresh pasta, but with the aid of a pasta machine, pasta making is literally child’s play and the end results can be very rewarding. All you need is patience, care and quality ingredients and there’s no going back once you’ve made your own homemade pasta.
Pasta is simply the Italian word for dough.  The actual dough is a very simple mixture of flour, salt, eggs and olive oil. The best flour to use is semolina flour: a hard, very fine wheat flour. In Italy, flour is classified either as 1, 0, or 00, and refers to how finely ground the flour is and how much of the bran and germ have been removed. Doppio zero is the most highly refined and is talcum-powder soft. It is sometimes difficult to obtain, so you will probably have to visit a specialized food store to find some. General plain flour can be used, but it produces a dough which cannot be rolled out as thinly by hand so it's best to use this only if you have a pasta machine.
The popular history of pasta suggests that it was brought back from China by Marco Polo. This now seems to be factually incorrect. The 'Real' history of pasta records that the Ancient Romans were eating Pasta a good thousand years before Marco Polo was born and the famous Roman Chef, Apicius makes reference to a form of Pasta ribbons in his 1st century cookbook.
Making fresh pasta is fun and you can also experiment with variations in colour and flavour by adding ingredients such as spinach, fresh herbs, tomatoes or beetroot. Good pasta, just like bread requires kneading until the dough is smooth and shiny. Here are a few tips to help you on the road to perfect pasta: If the mixture feels a little soft, add a little more flour. If the mixture seems too hard, add another egg yolk. Always cover sitting dough with cling film or a damp tea towel to prevent it drying out. Do not add oil to the cooking water. It is a fallacy that it prevents sticking and is therefore a complete waste of oil. Add a little after cooking.
If making fresh pasta sounds like a load of hassle and too time consuming, buy good quality pasta made with real eggs or durum wheat and try something different.


Our egg pasta Garganelli at Fosh Food has 6 free range eggs per kilo instead of the required four giving a beautifully rich yellow colour and excellent texture. Special care and attention is used in making the Garganelli shape and the result is deliciously light, distinctive pasta that keeps its shape and flavour after cooking. Produced in the Emilia-Romagna region of Italy, Fosh Garganelli has a unique shape that is conducive to holding more sauce. They are best tossed with a rich meat ragù or cream-based sauce, but can also be cooked and served in salads.

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