So as you all may know, my addiction to pasta runs deep. I was in Cassinelli pasta shop in Astoria so much that they knew me by name. I used every penny of my husband and I’s Williams-Sonoma gift cards to purchase strainers and pasta serving dishes, and my prize possession, a kitchen aid attachment for fresh pasta. In my dreams, I’d whip up a batch of fresh pasta when my neighbors decided to pop by, while dressed in my Sunday best. In reality, I am in gym clothes most of the day, can barely find time to cook, and I don’t know my neighbors. So I usually used dried pasta. Which is fine, but why not take a little time to make my own pasta and dry it myself? I attempted bucatini.

I used the recipe that came with the attachment. What you can’t tell from the picture is that the pasta wasn’t very good. Sorry, but it wasn’t. I followed every detail of the recipe, and the dough was just a little dry. The trick with fresh pasta is that everything has to be measured exactly. The recipe tells you to add extra water if the eggs are not quite large enough. Fresh pasta should be very delicate, a little chewy and tender. And some think that this can only be achieved by using semolina flour.

There are two schools of thought with this. Some people swear by the flour and eggs, and others use semolina flour. Semolina flour is the same stuff that cream of wheat, couscous and grits are made out of – that kind of sticky, starchy consistency. This starchy consistency means higher gluten, which means the pasta will be more chewy. Remember we added vital wheat gluten to our pizza dough? Same idea. Kneading is also very important to creating that gluten. But remember, don’t knead too much.

Just a note, you don’t have to have a fancy-schmancy attachment to do this. You can simply roll it out thin on your countertop and slice it with a knife to make fettucini.

Here are some links to some recipes. Let me know which you think is the best!

Mario Batali’s White Flour Pasta

Jamie Oliver’s White Flour Recipe

All Recipes Semolina Pasta

Batali’s Spaghetti with Semolina Flour

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