October 21, 2012

Homemade Pasta (feature: Spinach and Butternut Squash Pasta)

I've been making pasta since... forever.  Homemade noodles and dumplings is something from my itty bitty childhood first memories (my father made them) and something I not only think of as a comfort food, but something I crave when the weather turns chilly.

I originally posted this recipe using cooked butternut squash after my Mom came to visit and snuck containers of pureed squash into my freezer.  I had been making plain and spinach pasta for years but that Fall I made squash pasta as well, and discovered how delicious and pretty it was.

Today is a beautiful Autumn day where I live - I hope it is where you live too!  What a great afternoon to whip up some homemade pasta.  Whether you make strips of pasta, shape it into other shapes (like bow ties) or roll it out to make lasagna noodles or homemade ravioli is up to you... as is adding spinach or other vegetables to give it color, nutrients and flavor or make it plain.  Have fun with it!

Homemade Spinach or Butternut Pasta

1 egg
1/2 t olive oil
4-5 oz. frozen spinach, thawed and briefly cooked
or 1/2 - 3/4 c butternut squash puree - already baked and scraped from the shell

Place into the bowl of a food processor and whirl until smooth.

Add 1 1/2 c flour
1/2 t salt

Process just until it gathers to a ball. Let set 10 minutes before working with it.

Roll it out very thin on a lightly floured surface, or if you have an Italian pasta machine, roll it out in portions starting at 1 and thinning it down to a 3 or 4.

If you have rolled it thin by hand, now use a pizza cutter to slice it into 1/2 inch strips, or even 1 inch if you like your noodles wide. With the pasta machine, make it into noodles if you have the attachment or lay it out and use the pizza cutter as well.

This pasta is also perfect for making homemade ravioli with if you cut it into squares, fill and seal instead of slicing into pasta strips. Use right away by dropping in boiling water and boiling for about 8 minutes. Toss with butter, salt and pepper or your favorite sauce or use in a chicken noodle soup!

 If you want to let them dry, just let them dry on the counter overnight, flipping the next morning and continuing to dry or if you have a pasta drying rack, let hang over night or to the next day until dried. Store in a sealed ziplock in the freezer until use.

Stop processing when it forms a ball

Butternut Squash pasta, Spinach Pasta and a blended squash/spinach pasta dough

Putting the dough through the pasta rollers

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