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Drying Homemade Pasta

post #1 of 33
Thread Starter 
I just viewed Jim Berman on making fresh pasta. Is it possible to dry homemade pasta for storage and later use? (Something like the packaged pasta available on the grocery shelves?)

I have been freezing, since when I try to dry my pasta it becomes very fragile and breaks into small pieces or crumbles very easily. Have read, elsewhere, that commercially made pasta consists of only flour, salt, maybe dried milk and no egg. That is why it is such a durable product ?
post #2 of 33
Lisbet,

When I make pasta dough, I use a very simple recipe: 1 egg for each 100 grams of flour. Try to find "00" flour as it is a finer grind than our standard fine cake flours. You can also use semolina flour with the same ratio.

Now, here's the key... work the dough!!! The more you work it, the more elastic it will become. Put it through your pasta machine at the widest setting and then fold it and do it again, and again, and again, and again, slowly moving the thickness setting down a notch or two every few foldings. This will keep your pasta from falling apart all the time. The working breaks down the glutens in the flower to become more elastic.

As for storage, fresh pasta is best for use that day. If you freeze it, it will be 'okay' but not as good as it was fresh. You can make batches as small as you need BTW...

I'll make a one egg/100 grams for a batch for my wife and I which makes about 1/2 lb of pasta.

It is simple... we Italians have been doing it for years with the same recipe and method. Buon appetito!
post #3 of 33
Not sure why you freeze it Lizbet. Once you've dried it, it wil last forever anyway.

Correct me if i'm wrong someone. But i've been taught that if you keep pasta dry it will keep forever
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"If we're not supposed to eat animals, why are they made of meat?" Jo Brand
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post #4 of 33
fresh pasta should be air dried for a bit before use.

what I'm not understanding is why go to the time&trouble of making fresh pasta only to turn it into "boxed dry" pasta.....

I'm old school; heap of flour, make a hole, crack in egg(s)

store bought dry pasta is sure convenient-er and easier, but I've never thought that was the point when it got to fresh linguine / fettuccine / noodles / lasagna / whatever.....
post #5 of 33
Homemade pasta dries out really fast. You're supposed to cover it with a damp towel or Saran Wrap until you're ready to cook it.
post #6 of 33
I've made a lot of pasta from scratch, usually using just semolina and water. As FL Italian said, make sure to knead the dough plenty. (By the way, the technique for semolina pasta is just a little different. If you want detail on that, just ask).

Sometimes I make more dough than I need for a batch. What I'm not using right away, I usually knead, roll into sheets, sprinkle with AP flour, put between 2 pieces of waxed paper, and store in the fridge for later cutting. I haven't tried freezing dough, and I'm not sure but I would imagine the tiny ice crystals would change the structure a bit?? I have found that noodles that are cooked and then frozen in an airtight container come out pretty good when reheated in a microwave. If you do this, I recommend adding a little bit of vege oil to the noodles and stirring them to coat the noodles before freezing, so they don't stick together. I put them in sealed plastic bags with all the air squeezed out.

Drying the noodles works great. Just make sure it dries fast enough that no mold develops (which is rarely an issue), and make sure the noodles don't dry stuck together, either by totally separating each noodle, or dusting with flour and leaving plenty of air space in between noodles. I usually dust them with flour and very gently form little "clumps" kind of like packaged dried ramen noodles but not as neat, and let them dry. There are two reasons for handling them gently: one is that you don't want to stretch them, since after cooking, the thinner parts will be mushy when the rest of it is just right, and the other is that you don't want to press them together, which makes thick parts stuck together, that will be undercooked.

All dried pasta is brittle. If yours is extra brittle, the kneading tip should help. Do handle it gently when dry, at any rate.
post #7 of 33
>what I'm not understanding is why go to the time&trouble of making fresh pasta only to turn it into "boxed dry" pasta.....<


I often make more than i need. that way theres good pasta when one of my brood gets the munchies.
We always have lots of shop bought too, but you cant beat homemade can you?
"If we're not supposed to eat animals, why are they made of meat?" Jo Brand
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"If we're not supposed to eat animals, why are they made of meat?" Jo Brand
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post #8 of 33
>>but you cant beat homemade can you?

I agree with you on that point <g>

generalizing, I see the biggest difference just between "fresh" and "dried" - dried homemade does not seem to be a whole lot different than "the boxed stuff"

some of the farm markets have both fresh and dried from the same vendor - they say it's the same, label ingredients on the dried stuff don't list 'the chem lab' - flour salt egg or water - "should" be 'same'...?

I don't make pasta all that much anymore - no pasta maker/roller here so I do strictly flat noodles by hand mix / rollout. I like to make it fresh for chicken soup - as an example - only because I can make super wide noodles. I have one recipe that calls for chive noodles - that can be tough to find ready made!
post #9 of 33
Thread Starter 

Drying Homemade Pasta

EVERYONE.........Thank you so very much for all of the very practical advice. "ChefTalk" is really wonderful ! Ask a question and one gets almost instant answers from pros of the trade who really know !!

FL Italian - LOL.......I'm of German heritage (what does a German know about Italian Cooking ??), married to an Italian !

bughut - Guess I wasn't too clear. I meant to say that I freeze instead of drying. Thanks for the "peek" into your professional web ad.

Dillbert - Just wanted to dry my pasta because it is not always convenient to make fresh at a moment's notice.

Oregon Yeti - Yes, yes, yes !......would love to know the technique for making with semolina flour. Didn't know there is a difference in technique ! When I freeze the pasta (after making fresh and not cooked). I vacuum with my "Food-Saver" before putting into the freezer. Your advice on drying is much appreciated.!
post #10 of 33
When making semolina pasta, the main difference as opposed to using white flour is that the dough needs to sit for an hour or two.

Make a pretty stiff dough of semolina and water (I don't have proportions; I go by feel).

Knead some, mostly just to mix the ingredients. The main kneading comes later.

Make the dough into a ball and wrap it with plastic wrap. Traditionally it's put in a bowl and covered with a damp cloth, which works just as well. Let it sit at room temperature for at least an hour or two. If you want, you can put it in the fridge overnight or longer. If you do, use plastic wrap rather than a damp cloth, and warm it to room temperature before proceeding.

Now the texture of the dough will be very different from when it was first mixed. It will have gone from somewhat granular to very smooth; only then can it be made into great pasta. Proceed as with white flour dough, kneading plenty. I coat it with AP flour when rolling.
post #11 of 33
"FL Italian - LOL.......I'm of German heritage (what does a German know about Italian Cooking ??), married to an Italian !"

Lisbot,

My mother is German and is the best Italian cook I know... However don't ask her to make anything German... it's okay but her Italian is much better. She's also the one who taught me to cook 50 years ago, so don't discount it!!

:D
post #12 of 33
Thread Starter 

Drying Homemade Pasta

Oregon Yetti: Many Thanks !!
"Make a pretty stiff dough of semolina and water (I don't have proportions; I go by feel)".

I'm sure I will be able to get it right (or close to) by trying. I'm not adverse to applying a bit of effort and working things out for myself !
post #13 of 33
Making pasta from scratch is really fun and rewarding:D If you've tried out my suggestions, I hope your pasta has come out great. Whether you have or not, I hope you're having a great time with it.
post #14 of 33
:^)
post #15 of 33
oh man my favorite. we just made linguini last nite at work, dried it out and put it in fridge. same recipe as Fl Italian stated 1 egg and 100g of flour. we do have the "00" flour too, gnocci comes out real nice too. and makes good dough for ravioli aswell. i dont like adding semoline to mine as some may. we made some sweet potato, ricotta, carmalized onions and sundried tom. ravioli the other day too.

fresh is definatly better and yeah better eaten the day of.
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post #16 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dillbert View Post

what I'm not understanding is why go to the time&trouble of making fresh pasta only to turn it into "boxed dry" pasta.....

store bought dry pasta is sure convenient-er and easier, but I've never thought that was the point when it got to fresh linguine / fettuccine / noodles / lasagna / whatever.....

I've newly been diagnosed with celiac. Going gluten-free is tricky, especially as I love pasta... if I don't eat pasta twice a day, probably something is wrong with me! Commercial corn and rice pasta quite frankly sucks.

 

I found this all-purpose flour substitute that's supposed to make decent egg pasta. http://www.julesglutenfree.com/product-p/flour-1x5.htm

 

My plan is to get together with a friend and make ~10 lbs of pasta that I can dry and then store, using instead of the store-bought noodles I would normally use.

 

Fresh is awesome, but I have two kids and a full-time job, so this isn't about being gourmet for me, it's about being able to eat something I love gluten-free.

post #17 of 33
Quote:

Quote:

Originally Posted by Julia Ziobro View Post

Commercial corn and rice pasta quite frankly sucks.

 

 

 

I've never heard of corn pasta but the rice pasta found in Asian stores is great. I've also bought all sorts of other pasta, like buckwheat pasta, quinoa pasta etc. 

post #18 of 33

The rice noodles in Asian stores isn't pasta though, they are rice noodles in different shapes and textures.  It's good, but none of it approaches the texture of pasta.

post #19 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by kuan View Post

The rice noodles in Asian stores isn't pasta though, they are rice noodles in different shapes and textures.  It's good, but none of it approaches the texture of pasta.

I see - I never understood the difference between noodles and pasta. 

post #20 of 33
This question is for anyone here... Where do you purchase semolina flour. I have looked at every grocery store and no one seems to carry it. Where should I be looking or is it called something else on the package?

Thanks in advance,
Quorra
post #21 of 33

Where are you, Quorra?  It's definitely called semolina; if you search for "semolina" on the Amazon site you'll get an idea of some of the packages and vendors, as well as your online options, maybe. 

 

In the U.S., health food stores sometimes carry a wider range of flours.

post #22 of 33

OK. Generally speaking, I think it's best to go easy.  I'm sure I've posted this recipe video before.  It's very good.  I've personally stole this whole idea and have used it for my cooking classes (YES, I do give proper credit)

 

PASTA TRICKS DRY AND FRESH - Yahoo! - Watch videos online ...

 

Fabio Viviani gives us his tricks & tips how to best prepare dry pasta and then uses a food processor and pasta machine to make a super simple, fresh egg and flour pasta.

 

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post #23 of 33

Why you want to make it FRESH then dry it is beyond me. Sure you can do it but why not just buy a good grade of dry? If you do dry your own try and do it in an air conditioned place so to remove all moisture, If you don't get all moisture out it will mold out on you.

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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post #24 of 33

hi all.  drying fresh pasta is alot harder than it sounds,  take it from me i'm a small scale pasta producer. freezing leftover fresh pasta is farfar easier, the reason your dry pasta is brittle is all to do with glazing (the proffesional term). drying pasta is all about the partical size of the flour and how quickly liquid evapourates from your wet pasta. if you look at your brittle pasta there will be hairline non cracks (glazing) running through your pasta which means that the liquid has evapourated too quickly. ideally your wet pasta should take a couple of days to dry which may leave you a little queezy regarding egg pasta. the trade uses heat and moisture content to controll this but of course you cant, you can however do a passable job buy putting some mesh in the bottom of a shoe box, putting the pasta in it and closing the lid. toss a couple of times a day so it odesnt stick together. mould shouldnt be a problem but be vigilant. as i say, freeze it , youll get better results

post #25 of 33

I was just asking from the FL italian why all chefs are saying, that u must made it with your hands and knead it so long time with your hands. One chef said to me, that put the flour and eggs to the food processor just like Fabio makes(btw, i Love Fabio :nohomo:) and let it rest. After that, you can knead it with your pasta machine like your said. Biggest level, again and again... :) 

post #26 of 33

Here is how I make and dry homemade noodles that are not fragile and brittle. 

Cut noodles and drop into boiling beef or chicken stock. Adjust to rolling boil. Make sure you do not over cook. Cook until al dente

Drain and rinse thoroughly in cold water. This will help to keep noodles from sticking together.
By cooking and then drying, your noodles will not be fragile and brittle to the touch. Remember when you do use your dried noodles, they are parboiled so don't over cook them. If you are making spaghetti sauce, add the noodles just a couple of minutes before sauce is done. I taste to test desired doneness.

post #27 of 33

I


Edited by skeptic777 - 2/20/13 at 7:12am
post #28 of 33
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post #29 of 33

I've just recently acquired my pasta maker and I have no problems making fresh pasta. But because of my newly acquired skill, I want to give away assorted flavored fettuccine this christmas. But the problems comes in drying. First of all, I live in Manila and yesterday, we have 91% humidity and as far as I've read, that's not good for pasta. Sundrying maybe an option, but what about oven drying? I've raised this topic in a facebook group and a certain person there said to never do that. Even with my area's 90% humidity, better not do it at all, according to her. What are your thoughts on this?

 

What I'm thinking is, after I made fresh pasta, I'll lay them all in a baking tray (maybe 2-3-4 layers of pasta on top of each other) and blow them with a fan overnight. Then come morning I'll sundry them all day, and then at night, a few hours in the lowest temp that my oven can get (120f). WIll that work? Thanks in advance.

post #30 of 33

I just bought myself a 50 lb bag of semolina at GFS for $25. You do have to special order it, but it only takes 2 days to come in. It's a steal of a deal, and I'm planning on making my own pasta tomorrow for the first time. We're trying to go as processed free slash preseravitive free in our household, so making pasta is going to be a huge help. We love pasta in our household, and it's hard to not make dinners without it, lol. Hope it helps you! :)

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