Sawyer

If it's Ravioli put semolina flour down first then put ravs on top as to not stick. Freeze for 20 min tops or else the ravioli will burst in the water. After they are frozen store in a plastic bag. Don't leave the bag out after its done when your going to use it cause they will thaw and stick.

I generally make extra and freeze it.

If they're sticking like that, it could be that your dough is too wet. Definitely toss 'em in flour, and don't pile it up too high. (before you cook it, shake off the excess flour, and use a big pot / lots of boiling water to compensate for the extra flour.

I've done a couple different cheese fillings, a sausage filling and a mushroom filling. I don't usually use a recipe, I just mix in whatever I have that sounds good until I like the consistency. The mushroom was the most wet but they froze well. The more wet the filling the less time you should leave them uncooked I think.

Either freeze them or cook them quick. So far that's never failed me.

With nearly all pasta, you'll find you need more flour on the surface than you think you do. As long as the flour stays on the surface, and you don't keep kneading it into the actual dough, you pretty much can't put too much flour on pasta.

Sawyer

You may not know what Timpano is, but once you had the chance to try it you will never want anything else.

The Sauce

Ingredients

  • 4 (28-ounce) cans whole peeled San Marzano tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for finishing.
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 8 cloves garlic, minced (about 3 tablespoons)
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 medium carrot, cut into large chunks
  • 1 medium onion, split in half
  • 1 large stem fresh basil
  • 1 tsp anchovy paste (optional)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preporation

  1. Place tomatoes in a large bowl.
    • Using your hands, crush the tomatoes by squeezing them in your fingers until pieces no larger than 1/2-inch remain.
    • Transfer 2 cups of crushed tomatoes to a sealed container and reserve in the refrigerator until step 4.
  2. Heat olive oil and butter over medium heat in a large Dutch oven until butter is melted.
    • Add garlic and cook, stirring, until softened and fragrant but not browned, about 2 minutes.
    • Add pepper flakes and oregano and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute.
    • Add tomatoes, carrot, onion, anchovies (if using) and basil, and stir to combine.
    • Season lightly with salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer over high heat.
  3. Cook, stirring once every 1 to 2 hours, until reduced by about half and darkened to a deep red, 5 to 6 hours (reduce temperature if the sauce is bubbling too rapidly or the browned bits begin to turn too dark).
  4. Remove from heat.
    • Using tongs, discard onion halves, carrots, and basil stems.
    • Add reserved tomatoes to sauce and stir to combine.
    • Season generously with salt and pepper and stir in minced herbs along with additional olive oil as desired.

Meatballs

Ingredients

  • 6 ounces torn Italian bread
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk, plus more as needed
  • 1 medium onion, minced
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 4 ounces grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, grated
  • 1/2 cup loosely packed fresh parsley leaves, minced
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 ounces fatty pancetta, finely minced
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 1 tablespoon fresh minced oregano
  • 1/2 cup homemade veal demi glace (or chicken stock with 4 packets unflavored gelatin)
  • 1 pound ground chuck
  • 1/2 pound ground short rib
  • 1 pound ground pork
  • 1 pound ground veal

Preporation

  1. (Optional, if using whole pieces of meat) Cut meat into 1-inch cubes and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet, and freeze for about 15 minutes or until meat is firm around the edges.
    • Place in a food processor with a chilled blade, and pulse until meat is pebbly-ground.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine bread with buttermilk, tossing to coat. Let stand, tossing occasionally, until bread is completely moist, about 10 minutes.
    • Squeeze bread between your fingers or mash with a spoon to make sure there are no dry spots; if there are dry spots that refuse to moisten, add more buttermilk 1 tablespoon at a time until bread is moist throughout.
  3. Add onion, garlic, Parmigiano-Reggiano, parsley, salt, pepper, pancetta, egg yolks, oregano, and demi glace to bread/buttermilk mixture.
  4. Set mixer bowl in stand mixer and attach paddle.
    • Starting at low speed and gradually increasing to medium-high speed, beat bread mixture until thoroughly blended, stopping to scrape down sides as necessary.
    • Add 1/3 each of the beef and pork and beat at medium-high speed until thoroughly blended with bread mixture.
  5. Remove bowl from stand mixer and add remaining beef and pork.
    • Using a clean hand, gently mix meatball mixture, teasing apart ground meat with your fingers, just until ground beef and pork and thoroughly distributed throughout; avoid mixing any more than is necessary for even distribution.
  6. Preheat 3 tablespoons leaf lard in a large cast iron skillet, and sear meatballs on all sides before adding to sauce during its final hour of cooking.

Garganelli

Ingredients

  • 10 ounces tipo 00 flour
  • 2 large eggs plus 4 egg yolks
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

Preporation

  1. Form the flour into a mound with a well in the center big enough to fit the eggs.
    • Crack the eggs into the well and beat with an fork until a slurry is formed.
    • Use a bench scraper or your hands to combine into a loose dough - knead for about 5 minutes or until smooth and not tacky.
  2. Wrap the dough tightly in plastic wrap and let rest for 30 minutes.
  3. Divide the dough into 6 equal pieces and roll them out so they are thin enough to see the outline of your hand through the dough.
  4. Using a pasta or pizza cutter, cut the dough into 2" squares, and place on a gnocchi striper, rolling into garganelli with a thin wooden dowel.
    • Pinch the end of each piece.
  5. Line a baking sheet with a linen towel and dust with flour and neatly stack the garganelli next to each other.
  6. Allow to dry for 12-24 hours.

Timpano

INGREDIENTS

  • 15 ounces tipo 00 flour
  • 2 whole eggs plus 6 egg yolks
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 lb Genoa salami, sliced into 1/2" rounds
  • 1/2lb grated aged provolone
  • 1 lb low-moisture mozzarella, cut into cubes
  • 12 hard-boiled eggs, cut in half
  • Meatballs (see above)
  • Red Sauce (see above)
  • Garganelli, par-boiled, cooled, and drained (see above)
  • Whole nutmeg, grated

Preporation

  1. Begin by pouring the flour onto a kitchen counter, making a large well in the center, and pouring the eggs into it.
    • Beat with a fork until a slurry is formed, and use a bench scraper or your hands to bring together a loose pasta dough.
    • Knead for about 5 minutes or until the dough is smooth and not tacky, wrap in plastic wrap, and let rest for 30 minutes.
  2. Unwrap dough, dust with flour, and on a well-floured surface, begin rolling out into one large disc.
    • Flour as necessary, and use the rolling pin to flip once it gets too large to pick up.
  3. Preheat oven to 375F.
    • Thoroughly grease a 6-quart dutch oven with both olive oil and butter.
    • Gently drape pasta round over top, and lift/stretch/push down into the cooking vessel.
  4. Begin the filling process with a layer of pasta, then sauce, then eggs, meatballs, cheeses, salami, and repeat until all fillings are used up and timpano is filled to the brim.
    • Press down lightly, and grate some extra provolone on top to help seal everything inside.
  5. Fold the flaps of dough up from the sides and seal the "bottom" of the timpano closed.
    • Cover and place in oven for about 2 hours, or until internal temperature registers 125F.
  6. Let rest for at least 30 minutes, ideally 90.
    • When ready to take out, place a large cutting board over top of the dutch oven, and use it to invert the timpano.
    • Gently turn the dutch oven, lifting off the top.
    • Cut into slices, serve atop a warm pool of sauce, and grate fresh nutmeg over top.
Sawyer

I boiled what pasta I had on hand I had two half full boxes of different types of pasta so I used those up.

Put in a ton of veggies like broccoli, corn, onions, green onions, cherry tomatoes and snap peas. There's also eggs, cheese and diced chicken in there.

The dressing consists of dukes mayo and sweet vidalia onion dressing. Then I seasoned it and this is what you get.

As for the veggies I added what I had on hand you can put whatever you like in it.

"Salad" has a fairly loose definition, here the pasta has been tossed with salad dressing (probably mayo) and served cold is a common pasta salad. I'd just say cold pasta.

A pasta salad imo. is mostly salad with some pasta. But sure, you could call it whatever is the most convenient.

Sawyer

I think rubbery just means you have more gluten than you'd like. It comes from working the dough, and if you want more tender pasta just run the Kitchenaid for less time and you'll develop less gluten.

When it comes to flour there are a few variables. most important are the protein content and grind size.

In the US most flours range from ~6% in pastry flour up to ~15% or higher in bread flours. AP flour is usually right in the middle as it's designed to be good enough to work for any recipe. That's why it's called All Purpose. Anyway, this protein is what turns into gluten when combined with moisture in your dough. You knead the dough to facilitate the chemical reaction like we were talking about above.

Another aspect of flour is the grind size, which changes the texture of your pasta.

The '00' in 00 flour refers to the grind size, rather than the protein content, which can be very low or very high. Finely milled 00 flour makes a smoother pasta while coarser ground semolina produces a more textured pasta.

Just remember that difference is independent of the protein content, which also affects the texture in a different way.

There's also the distinction of what wheat the flour is milled from.

Here in the US it's mostly from the same wheat variety unless you use semolina flour, which is made from durhum wheat. Also remember that Italian flours are often lower in protein content than American flours, so just do your homework and check on the actual protein content.

If this helps, remember the dried pasta you buy at the store is made from semolina (durhum wheat) and water, while fresh pasta at home is usually made from AP flour and eggs.

You can just as easily make pasta at home from semolina and water. that's normal for shaped pasta like cavatelli, orecchiette, etc. but for a delicate stuffed pasta you'd use a dough from finer milled flour and egg.

People will always argue about olive oil and salt in pasta doughs. I think the oil is supposed to inhibit some gluten formation making your dough more tender but I'm not sure how much you'd need to notice the difference. salting the dough is fine as long as the crystals are small enough and your pasta is thick enough that it doesn't tear the pasta sheet. You should be salting your boiling water heavily enough that your pasta will absorb salt while cooking as well, but there's nothing wrong with salting the dough. My theory is that the salt is absorbed more evenly by the pasta when dissolved in solution in the cooking water and absorbed by the pasta, but I can't say I've done enough side-by-side comparisons to call it either way.

If you're just getting into pasta then try a bunch of different flours and see what you like best. It doesn't have to be a science project if you don't want it to be. Just swap out ingredients, whether it's flour, eggs, water, salt, oil, or something more, and see what happens.

Sawyer

I think what puts most people off, other than the thinner quality of the sauce, is the notion that those are runny eggs.

The eggs are cooked from the residual heat. It's not that the pasta is soupy, the sauce actually is quite creamy and smooth, but the noodles are still slurpable instead of being sticky.

Getting the temperature just right is a little bit tricky as it depends on heat retention of your skillet and stove, but once you get the hang of it you know it's right when you see it.

I was taught to make carbonara by my sister's fiancé, who is an Italian from Puglia region. The closest recipe to his that I have seen is on youtube, on foodtube channel. I make mine the same way Antonio Carluccio does. I use bacon instead of guanciale and my cheese is different but the rest is almost identical.

Notice how the title of that video is "Real Spaghetti Carbonara" ? I'm thinking Antonio is casting shade on anything that does not closely match his dish.

What I do:

  1. I didn't add an additional egg yolk, since I made just one portion for myself. If I'm cooking for 3 people or more, I do that as well.
  2. I used smoked pork cheeks instead of proper Italian guanciale, which is cured. Guanciale is much harder to come by over here and is much more expensive, whereas I can get great quality smoked pork cheeks at a local butcher for very cheap. Besides, I like supporting local produce.
  3. I cook pork cheeks in a dry pan. There really is no need for olive oil in this recipe, almost always fat from cheeks is enough and that way you don't have to use paper towel afterwards. If it's not enough, you can always add a little bit of butter.
  4. I also add a clove of garlic to the pan and let it caramelize a little bit. After a few minutes I take it out, chop it up and add in the end. It gives a nice aroma and tiny bit of sweetness.
  5. Negligible difference - this time I used Grana Padano cheese, because that's what I had at home. Usually it's Parmigiano-Reggiano or Pecorino Romano.
  6. I use plastic utensils in my non-stick pans. I don't want to ruin my pans since I'm not sponsored and buy them myself.
Sawyer

Pasta Puttanesca

Boil pasta, cooking to al dente, drain and set aside. Sauté garlic with red pepper flakes, salt and anchovies in olive oil over medium heat in large skillet, about two minutes.

Add in crushed tomatoes, olives and capers, simmering for 10-15 minutes. Add in pasta and reduce heat, mixing thoroughly.

Mix in tomatoes (if using) and garnish with parsley before serving.

Recipe:

  • 1 pound spaghetti
  • 1 can crushed tomatoes (28 oz)
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 tin anchovy fillets
  • 1 tablespoon Capers (more depending on preference)
  • 1/2 cup Kalamata olives, pitted and halved
  • 4-5 cloves of garlic, minced
  • Parsley for garnish
  • Optional: grape tomatoes
    • I sautéed them with olive oil, salt and pepper before adding them to the dish

Sawyer

This is the recipe you should know if you are planning on making you own pasta. It is really simple, 10 oz flour, 2 eggs, 4 additional egg yolks, and a pinch of salt.

Put flour in a big bowl, make a well in the middle and add eggs. Fresh egg pasta like this cooks in 40 seconds or so, depending on thickness.

Mix until combined and you have one mass of dough.

Knead this mass for 10 minutes, and then wrap tightly in plastic wrap and rest in fridge for 30 minutes. At this stage I usually quarter my dough and run through the pasta machine, which helps cut the pasta to the desired shape, but is not entirely necessary.

Fettuccine is semi-easy with a nice sharp knife or pizza cutter. If the pasta is a little wet, add a sprinkle of flour and knead a couple times.

If it's dry, add a sprinkle of water and knead a couple times. When you have cut your strips, let them hang over something to dry for bit, then drop in boiling water for a couple minutes to cook.

Electric pasta machine, not extruder but normal type, is the way to go. Not hard to cut by hand most of the time, the cutting attachments are mostly unnecessary.

Also, first few times you try it won't work out, after a while it becomes simple though.

Sawyer

I think that my problem was probably just not letting the dough rest. You can make pasta with AP flour, but you need to try with semolina. It's gritty and coarse, but with moisture, kneading and rest, it becomes beautifully pliable but still firm.

As for the flour, the two variables that are really going to affect your pasta are the protein content of whatever flour you use, and the ash content.

Dealing with the latter first, ash content really comes into play with Tipo 00 flour, which is something of a prized possession for non-European bakers.

It has nothing to do with the protein content of the flour, rather the amount of bran/germ in the flour. Usually this correlates to the fineness of the mill, as well. The point here is that for an equal weight or volume of Tipo 00 flour versus standard king arthur flour, you don't need quite as much water as it's more absorbent.

Other than that it's not going to differ too much versus whatever other mill of flour you might use.

Then, the protein content of your flour determines how "strong" the noodle is and also how resilient the dough is. If you use bread flour, you're going to run into an issue where the dough starts to tighten and seize up eventually as you work it. For this reason you want to make sure your dough is rested and stretchable before you cut it. On the flip side if you use cake flour you'll get a dough with relatively little elasticity, and a noodle wihout much "chew" or "bite" to it.

My flour mix is generally AP flour and durum or semolina (which in addition to being high protein/gluten flours also impart some color). I'll use 50/50 for a fettucine or linguine (which I prefer al dente, with some bite to it), and 75/25 in favor of the AP for filled pastas like ravioli, where I want the noodle to be tender.

Last but not least, if you insist on using volume-based measurements for dough, use 1 cup of flour per 2 eggs. However I'd strongly recommend that you start using weight-based measurements for anything where you're combing water and flour. In this case, you want a 3:2 flour-to-liquid ratio. I don't use olive oil in my dough but if you choose to use some, just include it as a liquid, and keep the ratio the same.