Updated: Nov 18, 2022
This is a year-round favorite on the farm. Works great with Red Fife, Wisconsin No 2, or Marquis flour.
1/8 t salt
1/8 t black pepper
1 tsp olive oil
1 3/4 C flour, 92% Turkey or similar
Put the eggs, salt, pepper, and olive oil in a food processor, and beat the egg for a few seconds. Next add the flour and mix for 20 seconds or so. From here you are watching the consistency closely--initially, it should be crumbly and fairly dry. If it's too wet, add more flour. I usually mix it until it pulls away from the sides and forms a big ball, then finish it by hand on the counter top. The dough should be fairly stiff and strong.
Alternatively, you can mix by hand by putting all the flour in a pile on the counter top, forming a well in the middle, then putting the egg, salt, pepper, and oil in the well. Beat the egg with a fork and keep stirring until all the flour has been incorporated. There will be a very messy and sticky phase with this technique--work through it and keep your cool.
The key to rolling pasta is to roll it multiple times, putting the rollers closer together each time through. If the dough sticks to the rollers, mix in some more flour. If the ribbon comes out crumbly, fold it together and run it through again, several times if necessary. Keep the portions small. As soon as the ribbon is longer than 12", cut it in half. The pieces can be staged on a counter dusted with flour.
I like to have the water already boiling when I start rolling. When it's time to run the ribbons through the cutter, I go directly from the cutter to the hot water. On my machine, I roll down to the "5" setting, on a scale of 1-9. Any thinner has made a weak noodle that breaks too easily.
There is a learning curve to pasta that can seem off-putting, but frankly I find it very easy and quick. Push through the learning phase and you will quickly have a new food group in your quiver. Working with a food processor, it's actually a fast meal to prepare.