Homemade Egg Pasta 自製雞蛋麵
By Ellen L.Published: 2014-08-01
We had this really cool pasta noodle making machine in our house when we were growing up. You've probably seen it before, it's the type you have to clamp on the table and then insert a crank handle in and you were off making all kinds of noodles. Actually the only thing my grandma ever used our pasta machine for was for making her own wonton skins. I would always volunteer to help her, gathering the long floury sheets of dough as they came out of the shiny silver machine. It was so fascinating to witness a dull lump of dough become something else entirely: smooth, sleek, uniformly thin, almost translucent sheets that got cut into perfect squares of wonton skins. I recently became obsessed with the idea of making my own noodles and kept bugging my 媽媽 to ship over our old (and heavy!) pasta machine to me in Hong Kong. Which she, of course, as any sane person would do, completely refused to do. And then I realized (duh!) that they still sell these pasta machines, pretty much unchanged in design and function, and for a wonderfully reasonable price. So here is the first product from our shiny new pasta machine, this wonderful Homemade Egg Pasta, or 自製雞蛋麵.
I had finally located the longed for, elusive pasta machines on a dusty store shelf and was staring admiringly at the box when a lady wandered over to see what I found so interesting. "Humph!' she declared, "What it that thing for?!" When I had repeated three times that it was a pasta making machine, it finally dawned on her that this here shiny contraption was for making your own noodles. "Humph!!" she snorted in disgust, "Why would anyone want to make their own noodles!? Just pay 10 dollars for a packet at the store!" And then she walked off, wanting to have no more to do with a person like me who was clearly insane. Well, I'll be the first to admit that maybe I'm a bit off my rocker, but surely the floury fun we had in making these noodles and the great enjoyment in eating our own tasty, tender and fresh homemade egg pasta noodles was worth it!
Now that I'm making more and more of my own baked goods at home (mostly cuz my daughter loves to eat baked stuff as much as me!), I always buy big bags of unbleached organic flour to have around the house. If I buy the really big bags, the price works out so that it's not that much more expensive than the regular flour.
Oooh, look at my beautiful free range eggs! Give you a good tip, get them fresh at your local wet market and save yourself a lot of bucks. Look or ask for 走地雞蛋. We've tried all kinds of eggs (we're big on eggs in this house) at every kind of price and I can honestly say that I love the taste of the wet market fresh free range eggs the best!
Mixing the egg and water inside the flour well got a bit tricky because I did it on a big plate (cuz my working space, also known as my itty bitty cutting board didn't look up to the job) and I realized (too late!) that flour wells spread a lot when being mixed. Next time I will just use my really big mixing bowl.
The toughest part for me was the kneading of the dough. Humm...I think I need to
trick persuade my 老公 that this type of exercise would be just the thing for developing manly upper arm muscles.
Ta-da! Our lovely silky Homemade Egg Pasta! There is nothing quite like the feeling, as I'm sure you all know, of working hard at making something, sweating even, and at the end of the day, having a wonderful beautiful product come out of your own labor. Floury, sweaty, tired as we were, we were ecstatic with joy when first smooth and perfectly cut strings of homemade egg pasta came rolling out of the machine. Look, we cried, it's not sticking! Look, how even the strands! Look, you can make beautiful pasta swirls! So...Much...Fun! Tender yet springy, smooth and tasty tender Homemade Egg Pasta!
We are super excited after our first homemade pasta noodle making and are planning ahead to make all sorts of things like our own homemade cantonese wonton noodles (get out that bamboo stick!), wonton skins, etc! Super Yummilicious!
Homemade Egg Pasta Recipe 自製雞蛋麵
(original dough recipe here)
Get yourself a Pasta Machine!
454 g unbleached flour (1 lb)
4 eggs and one yolk
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp water
Pour out flour on a big working surface into a circle about 8" wide. Make a well in the middle of the flour and add the eggs, yolk, oil, salt and water. Use a fork to mix the liquid stuff together. Once the liquids are mixed, start pulling in the flour from the sides and mix it in. Once the flour is mostly stirred in use your hands to mix until thoroughly combined. Knead for 10 minutes or so until the dough is really, really smooth. Cover and let rest for one hour at room temperature.
Clamp pasta maker to a sturdy table. Cut the dough into four to five pieces. Flatten one piece with your hand and lightly flour both sides. Put it through the largest setting of the roller of the pasta machine a couple of times until pretty smooth and a nice shape. Always lightly dust with flour on both sides as needed to keep the pasta from sticking. Start making your pasta sheet thinner increment by increment by lowering the setting each time until you reach 3 or 2 (or what ever thickness of pasta is your preference.) Flour lightly on both sides again (important!) and pass it through the pasta noodle cutter of the size you desire. (We love linguini so that's the size we chose.) Be sure to have someone ready to catch the pasta strands as they come through. Cut the pasta with a scissors at increments of about 1 foot and immediately hang on a pasta rack (a clothes hanger will do fine too) or swirl into little pasta nests on a floured surface. (We liked the pasta nests better.)
Let air dry for 10-15 minutes before cooking. Boil water in large pot. Add a generous amount of salt. When water is boiled add the pasta in and cook for 1 to 3 minutes (depends how thick you make your pasta). Watch and taste test the pasta as it cooks to catch the pasta at the 'al dente' stage. Scoop out immediately, mix with your preferred pasta sauce and serve!
Tip: For leftover pasta (we found the nests of pasta more user friendly) you can allow to air dry for an hour or so and then sprinkle some flour in a container (or a ziplock), gently place the nests in, cover and freeze. Freezes really well! Or hang the pasta on hangers until completely air dried, pack carefully away in air tight container and store in dark cupboard.
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