A Pasta-Making Workout

In my passion about learning all things pasta, I decided to go deep and old-fashioned by making pasta without a machine. There are a variety of machines that help flatten out the glutenous mixture of eggs and flour into something thin enough to make noodles or ravioli with. There’s also elbow grease. Christina (the magic genie responsible for almost all of the pretty photos on the @comemakewithme Instagram account; ugly ones are all mine) challenged me to use the latter. I did not expect my abdominals to be sore for days after rolling out fettuccine dough from scratch but alas, they were. Forget the gym and trainers; roll out some dough for that ab work!

As many a wise person has observed, machines are magical. A manual pasta rolling machine makes quick work of getting a delicate egg noodle. Try as I might, I could not roll the pasta dough nearly thin enough to make a delicate noodle. Thus, the resulting fettuccini was more like a traditional pappardelle or matriciani rather than a beautiful, thin, translucent angel hair. It would be delicious with a heavy meaty sauce or something with a really bold flavor. A delicate sauce would be wasted because the thick hand cut noodles will ruin the sauce-to-pasta ratio.

It was thrilling to hand roll and hand cut the pasta and end up with something edible. I texted many of my friends triumphantly with photos of the finished product. There was something more transformative and a “winning” feeling about hand rolling rather than using the machine. Though, the final result was not as edible. The machine and I are going to be best friends for life because, while making the pasta is supremely satisfying, eating good pasta is even better!

Photos by Christina Becker.