Thursday, March 4, 2010

The pasta fiasco

What wonderful intentions I had yesterday morning. I had cooked in the slow cooker overnight a batch of spaghetti sauce (from raw tomatoes). We are talking, blanched about 30 tomatoes and ran them through the food mill (which by the way was not nearly as easy I thought it was going to be when I had the mental image). So, we awake to the house smelling so insanely wonderful that for a few moments as I lay in my bed I wasn't quite certain that perhaps I was still dreaming. The sweet fragrance filling me with inspiration. I decide first thing...home made pasta. What better compliment to the absolute perfection that I had created in the sauce. But first...meatballs. But not just any meatballs. We are talking a pound each of ground pork and ground beef mixed with eggs, Italian bread crumbs and parm cheese fried in sunflower oil. Yeah, nothing resembling healthy, but little mouthfuls of heaven, and well worth the expense spent on fat and calories. So the meatballs are plunked into the sauce to absorb the saucey goodness. The house smells so wonderful at this point that I am certain there is no stopping me. Although I am sure that onlookers were pretty certain I needed leather restraints.
Ok onto the pasta, yeah that. Sounds simple enough, I glance over the ingredients...check. I have everything (eggs and flour thats it...who knew?!) So I crack open the eggs measure out the flour and get it all mixing together in my handy dandy kitchen aid. Looking pretty dry I am thinking to myself. Hmmm now rolling this out. I break the dough into three balls and attempt to roll it on my pasty mat. DANG This is NOT budging. I look over the recipe again...yup right amount of everything. What did I do wrong??!! I scan the instructions..."run through pasta maker three times"! WHAT?! What pasta maker? I don't have a pasta maker. So back to the dough on the counter. I try to tackle this with sheer determination. I bang it with the rolling pin, I stretch it with my hands, I pound it with my fists, not much seems to be happening. Who knew egg and flour when mixed in perfect combination could create a leather ball? Yup, that's exactly what it was. So I start rolling and rolling and rolling. Fast forward to three hours later, I am still rolling and rolling and rolling. I will not accept defeat. I swear it's the Scot in me. Finally almost all of the dough is rolled out, cut into circles and stuffed with cheese filling I decide that there is certainly enough ravioli made and that the third ball of leather would make a great treat for my dog (my pleading muscles made that decision). The ravioli boiled up (took about 30 minutes instead of the suggested 15 but that was because I am sure mine was three times thicker, but remember I didn't run it through the pasta maker three times though I like to think it was also three times yummy and three times as filling).
SO.... reviews of the experience. Absolutely delicious. THE best ravioli I have ever had...ever. But worth the work, only if someone else is going to make if for me. Now, that said, imagine my good fortune when whining about my aches and pains a friend on Facebook GAVE ME her pasta maker. So the next time I write a review on home made pasta I plan to do so sans the aches and pains.