Let’s call this one a work in progress.
Last month I took a ravioli making class and bought a pasta roller. Since then I’ve made ravioli three times, tagliatelle once and lasagna twice.
The first time I used Giada De Laurentiis‘ classic Italian lasagna recipe. It uses a bechamel sauce to add creaminess and spinach. I liked it, but my son didn’t. Turns out 14 year old boys don’t like spinach or creaminess in their lasagna. They just want a big wad of cheese and tomato sauce. Who know?
So tonight I tried to Americanize the classic Italian lasagna. I took out the spinach, increased the tomato sauce to bechamel ration and added more cheese.
I’m getting much better with my pasta dough. The key seems to be just kneading the heck out of it. Tonight I kneaded it by hand for 15 minutes before setting it aside to rest.
After that, the dough was really easy to work. It went through the rollers easily and came out in smooth, elastic sheets.
As a bonus, I turned the leftover dough into a very delicate angel hair. I’ll cook this tomorrow with some of the left over tomato sauce.
Update – My poor angel hair is no more.
The noodles were too thick. I only took them down to the #3 setting. That seemed about the right thickness, but they adsorbed a lot water and almost doubled in thickness. They tasted good and had a nice texture, but they were just too thick.
I had the same problem when I made the tagliatelle. Good noodles, but just too thick.
Next time, I’ll take them down to at least #5, maybe even #6. #3 is just getting started.
The other bad was my son still didn’t like it. He remains firmly convinced that lasagna is just tomatoes and cheese. I’m not going to change his mind.
I’ll have to make him the version he likes next time. Otherwise, I’m going to lose one of my tasters.