Monday, October 4, 2010

Bubble, Bubble Pasta Pot!

On Saturday, mother, sister and visited my Italian cousin, Eddie and his wife Pat who have a lovely home on the Maryland shore of the Choptank River, a major tributary of the Chesapeake Bay. Being (1/2) Italian, what would a visit with an Italian cousin be without food…not just any run-of-the-mill food, but homemade bruschetta, AND homemade Italian Wedding soup, AND homemade pasta, AND homemade gravy (for my dear readers who are not Italian, gravy is tomato sauce), AND homemade braciole (thinly sliced meat, Eddie used pork tenderloin, filled with an onion, garlic, breadcrumb and herb paste, tied together, browned in olive oil and cooked in a pot of gravy).

For purposes of this post, I will focus on the process of making homemade pasta. First, a story…Once upon a time, Eddie’s brother, Donny, decided that he wanted to preserve some family recipes, so, all inspired by the likes of Larry King, he set out on a mission to tape his mom and his aunt talking, interview-style. Have you ever been at a table with a collection of Italians…it’s hysterical! There’s a lot of scoffing and yelling going on that, in other families, would lead to extended familial estrangement, but to Italians, this is normal behavior…..and expected. So the taping begins and my aunt gives an instruction, and her sister says, “no it’s not” and my aunt gives another instruction, and her sister says, “no it’s not”….and so on. Needless to say, not much memorializing transpired! However, Eddie did manage to secure the following pasta recipe:

Making the dough…
2 cups of flour
3 eggs
Dash of salt
1 tablespoon of olive oil
Make a well with the flour, add the eggs, salt, and olive oil in the center. Mix the dough from the center incorporating the outside of the well. When fully mixed, let the pasta dough rest for an hour. If you are not ready to make the pasta right away, seal the dough in a plastic zip-lock bag and refrigerate.

Making the pasta…
Eddie used a pasta machine that my dear aunts – Adeline and Millie – gave to Pat as a shower gift 40+ years ago.

Cut the dough into pieces

Run the dough through the flattening roller (don’t know if this is the technical term, but you get the idea) several times on decreasing thicknesses.

Once the dough is nearly paper thin, run it through the cutting device…

Nest the pasta. Let it dry on a drying rack or freeze until ready to use.

When ready to use, boil for a few minutes in salted water and serve with gravy.

Eating the pasta…
Eat. Reminisce. Laugh. I should write a book about the shit interesting things that happen to me and maybe someone will sign me to a movie deal. What?

Seriously, we enjoyed a perfectly delightful day with la mia famiglia.

On the way out I noticed the most adorable cookie jar…Pat’s mom, who got the cookie jar with S&H Green Stamps, passed this naughty little Italian boy down to her. I particularly like his hat...and his bow tie.


Teri said...

So sorry I missed out on such a lovely day :-( Must admit my brother, Eddie does make great "home mades."

KnitOne, PearlOnion said...

We missed you too and hope to see you soon! xoxo

Scratch.Love said...

Oh my gosh, what a wonderful post to stumble upon! Fantastic! I did not know such tapes existed and now I am on a mission to hear them.