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Cookinadinna with Ian T, Home-made pasta ,episode 1

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IanT

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Ok...I show you how to cookada pasta all bya you self... ;)


Guido in the kitchen, Episode 1: Home-made pasta

Alright, So I felt like going all out tonight...and show you all how to follow should you wish :)

Tonights menu:

-Home-made pasta from scratch (white flour and a touch of whole-wheat flour)
-Seared salmon with balsamic glaze
-Home-made Caesar salad


Alright, We start with the pasta.


I love home made pasta, I really feel that you have not truly tried and tasted pasta until you have had it fresh by hand. The storebought pasta doesnt even come close to doing it justice. Its so easy and you can make WAY more than what you can buy for the money in the store..

The recipe:

-4 eggs
-3C flour (i subbed in a little whole-wheat flour as well, for one of the cups it called for ai put 1/2 c. white 1/2c whole wheat flour)
-1 tsp salt
-a few Tbsp water (not at the beginning)

Yield: about 1lb of pasta ( a TRUE pound of pasta..not like they sell in the store where its a little less pasta and ALOT more water)






Okay, so get a bowl, pour the flour and salt into it and make a well in the middle of the flour, (you can also add some spices at this point should you like...I added some onion powder, garlic powder, and some fresh morter-n-pestel ground black pepper).





Next crack the eggs into the well, being careful not to let them drip out of the well. beat them with a fork (not a whisk...believe me youll thank me later...compare it to soap on a stick!!), carefully work some flour into the eggs until it turns into a paste, then work more of the flour in, mixing with the fork and after all the eggs seem to have absorbed as much flour as they can, now is the time to get DIRTY so roll up your sleaves!!...knead the dough together, adding a tablespoon of water at a time until the dough comes together...knead for about 10-15 minutes to soften the gluten enough (I didnt tell you this would be EASY! lol...its a nice arm workout!)....add a tablespoon or more water as needed until the dough has formed well, it should NOT be sticky, it should be slightly elastic, you can also add a pinch of flour every now and again to help it along...once the dough has been well-kneaded, its time to let it rest to soften the gluten, let the dough sit on the (sanitized!!) counter covered by the mixing bowl for 15mins-1hr ( the longer the better up to an hour)... what this does is it gives the gluten time to soften and for the flavors to mingle together, it will make the dough much easier to work with at later stages.



Next, after the dough has sat for a while, cut into 3/4 inch slices, you may want to cover with a damp paper towel so they dont dry out (not very wet paper towel!!!) as you work with them.



Next you get either your pasta machine ready or get your rolling pin out, i used a machine. to use one of these A) never wash it and B) always brush it down with flour all over before you start working with it so the dough doesnt stick (you will also want to run a little dough through and discard it to get all the old dough that has dried off the rollers and not into your new batch of pasta)



I start on the thickest setting (7), and then work my way down to 5 (all depends on how thick you like your pasta)...I like it kind of thick because I cook it al-dente (the ONLY way home-made pasta should be served!!!), thinning the pasta sheet slowly. I also add a pinch of flour on each side of the sheet so it doesnt stick to the rollers when time to cut (trust me do this...itll save you the trouble..Ive learned from experience!) After Im satisfied with the thickness I then switch the crank over to the cutting section and roll it through the cutters...I have mine set for linguine tonight (Itsa niiiiice!)

After I cut the pasta sheet, I seperate the individual pastas so they dont coalesce back into eachother..they will stick together in my experience if you let them sit without seperating them. I usually let them sit to dry a bit while I prepare other stuff for the meal, so I let these pastas sit on wax paper for a little while (also if you dont want to cook it all in one night...like me, you can leave them on the wax paper, and cover with another sheet over night to dry, you can then put these in the fridge or freezer and use them whenever youd like!!) or you can dry them on a pasta rack (or clothes drying rack that has been sanitized).







Next step: Caesar prep.

I use romaine hearts for my salad, you can use any type of lettuce you like but this is my favorite for Caesar so its the one I chose.

1st, cut the romaine hearts into about 1inch slices horizontally, (after washing of course), and wrap in a paper towel very well so they dont fall out...put in the fridge to crisp up) I chop up 3 very small tomoatoes and 1 onion, put in a bowl together and set aside.



this recipe is not exact, I make i to taste, usually yields me about 1/2-3/4 cup

WARNING: RAW EGGS! (or egg beaters/ultra-pasteurized eggs...but i couldnt find them and dont like egg beaters so i used regular raw eggs tonight)

recipe, REAL Caesar dressing:



-1 raw egg (usually just the yolk but i dont like to waste)
-grated parmasean cheese to taste (maybe 2.5 Tbsp?)
-2 TBSPish of Grey Poupon mustard (sp??)
-1 tin of anchovies in Olive Oil (along with the olive oil-for taste!) (I dont use the paste! yuck!...rather make my own)
-a little more olive oil (EVOO!!!!!)
-juice from 1/2 a lemon
-Worcester sauce to taste (sp??)
-a nice helping of fresh morter-n-pestel ground black pepper

I then combine all these ingredients together in the food processor and BRRRRAAAAAATATATATAATAA TAAAAAAAAAAAWEEEEEEEEEOOOOH.... ok the consistency should be somewhat thick, it should have a little bit of a bite to it and you should be able to taste the parmasean slightly, but all the flavors should mesh in harmony, with a kick (and you definitely want the black pepper to be part of that kick ...not spicy, more of an acidic kick)





Alright, I put this in a cup or tupperware and then put in the fridge to set a bit.

Now on to the next step...the salmon!

at this time I also get my biggest sauce pot and fill it to 3/4 with water and a little bit of salt and turn the stove on high (this will be for your pasta)

Balsamic-Glazed Salmon

I bought a whole filet of salmon ($13.00 at BJ's 5.99/pound!!! yeeeeaaaah!)

cut this in half and use half for the meal tonight (fresh fish will usually keep a day, this will definited fee 2 people for 2 nights.)

lets start with the glaze, but first I also get a pan, put about 2 Tbsp olive oil into it and put it on low to let the oil heat up and the pores in the pan constrict. this will also prolong the life of your pan and is referred to as 'seasoning the pan (or pot)'
(i use stainless steel..no nonstick! scratches in teflon =cancer)

Balsamic reduction glaze:

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup water, filtered
1 Tbsp plus 1 Tsp of Brown sugar ( or a pinch or so more depending on how sweet you like it, i added a littttle bit more)
juice of 1/2 a lemon

comine the ingredients in a pot and set on medium, stir and let simmer on medium until it reduces into a light syrup (this is why its called a reduction). DONT burn it. once it starts bubbling, turn it down (say if you have an electric stove and it was on 5 to get it to bubble (med heat), turn it down to 2, low-medium heat to keep it warm and reduce a bit further...if you let it cool it will harden/thicken and sugar will settle to bottom.)

Salmon:

your pan with the olive oil should be warm now, turn it to medium high heat (do not let the oil smoke...if its smoking ..it too hot =flashpoint=fire!!!!) 2 garlic cloves finely chopped, set aside (will be saute'ed at the end)









Get some of that good ol' morter-n-pestel ground seasalt and rub a few pinches over the salmon on both sides, the pan should be hot now and oil should freely move around when agitated. Add salmon skin side up. let it simmer for 2-3 minutes on this side, then flip, repeating process on the other side for 4 mins, both sides should be nicely browned but not burned, if your salmon is quite thick (as it often is...) keep flipping every few minutes to ensure it cooks all the way through... add garlic when the salmon is about 7 minutes into cooking, saute'e for 30 seconds and then set the pan on a cool burned, cover with a lid and let it sit for a bit (you might want to take it off a little early ...it will cook further when off of the burned and convered...I tend to like mine a little under-done and moist as opposed to dry.

Ok, now is the time to put your pasta into the water which should be boilling steadily at this point (and probably has been for a little while)

add it to the water and stir to ensure it doesnt stick together, this pasta only needs to cook 2-3 minutes or less to be al-dente...i usually cook mine about 1-2 minutes, taking it off one minute after the 'foam' rises to the top of the pot. It should be nice and firm, pour into strainer and quickly run under cold water to stop it from cooking further. rinse the pasta pot, add some olive oil/ mp ground salt and pepper and add the pasta, place on the hot burner and stir for 15 seconds, ("hot by design"), hold pot so as not to let the oil on bottom drip out and scoop the pasta onto a plate.





Next plate the salmon and spoon the glaze over it, I like the garlic to be around the sides as opposed to on top of the salmon because its better presentation-wise...( I didnt really care about presentation as much tonight as getting as much glaze on my plate as possible...its so good i could seriously drink it mmmmmmmmm trust me...make a double batch)



next quickly get your greens from the fridge, spoon 3Tbsp of the dressing into a bowl, add the romaine, and the chopped onion and tomato and toss the salad dressing throughout.

check to make sure all burners are off!!!

Optional step:

Next, I give thanks for all of the animals and plants that gave their lives for my meal and nourishment, I try to think of every ingredient and just say thanks ...not neccessarily to God (though I am religious) but I try to visualize each ingredient and its origin and just say thank you to the world for giving me a wonderful meal (not saying you have to...but thats what I do :)...



Serve and ENJOY!!!

the pasta you may have left drying can be covered after dinner, tape it up into an envelope of the wax paper the next day and store it!
 

mandy93

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Thanks so much!! Hmmm, guess I really do need to get that pasta roller now.... :)
 

IanT

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not neccessarily, you can do it just as well with a rolling pin, and you can make your own home-made cutter with a wood frame and piano wire tied parallel (sp?) in whatever diameter you want your noodles to be in, then you just lay the flattened dough on there when satisfied with thickness and again roll with the rolling pin to push it through the wire and cut it... real easy as well, the way they used to do it OLD SCHOOL STYLE :)
 
G

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Yum! You are very accomplished in the kitchen! I couldn't help but notice where your fire extinguisher is located though. :)
 

IanT

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Thanks for the compliments!! :)

Yeah I know its close to the stove, but Im pretty crazy in the kitchen...lot of things going on at once and usually have ingredients all over the place, I like it to be within arms reach should I need it...Ive also got a huge one within a steps reach under the kitchen sink should i not have access to that one :)

always good to have a backup plan especially with electric stoves (which I detest)... I miss gas...the only true 'simmer'..In my experience the electric ones just get too hot and dont keep constant heat...
 

ellen

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Thank you IanT...will be trying these recipes for certain. They look wonderful...and the pics are great. Already copied and pasted to my "food" recipes. Yum! I do not own a pasta maker, yet...lol...liked the tip about not washing it and running a 'scrap' piece of dough through first. Will try the rolling pin. Look forward to part 2. lol Do you make the spinach and tomato pasta too?
 

IanT

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yup! the only difference in those pastas with veggie purees is that I take an egg or two out depening on how fresh the veg is, (and how big the eggs are) this compensates so the recipe isnt over-moist (and hence sticky)
If you wash the pasta maker all the flour thats stuck in it will turn to dough and when dry...something resembling concrete! It actually even says in the manual I have saved for the machine not to ever wash it or get it near water...just to wipe down with a clean paper towel!


def try the rolling pin idea if you dont have a pasta maker!...you dont even have to make the piano wire box, you can just as easily cut them with a knife so long as youve got a steady hand (and dont mind if they may be a little crooked, but hey...this is REAL pasta...its not always perfectly straight! Its the TASTE that counts :)

Oh rest assured I think Ill be posting more of these threads in the future...not sure what Ill cook next, trying to finish up the salmon because it was literally a half of a filet!...tonight made some ginger saffron/coriander rice and a little ginger/honey/onion/garlic saute'ed salmon mmmmm mmm :)

Ill be sure to make a thread next time i do a big meal though :)

and I feel honored you saved the recipes!!
:)

Thanks for checking out the thread!
 
G

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IanT said:
tonight made some ginger saffron/coriander rice
Recipe???

I made Ian's balsamic glazed salmon and his Caesar dressing last night and both were delicious! In fact I expect I'll add his Caesar dressing to my cooking recipe website if he doesn't mind. :)

I might have tried the pasta but I don't have the pasta making device. Perhaps if Ian will tell us what application it has in soapmaking I might buy one. ;)


Looking forward to that ginger saffron/coriander rice recipe. After all the soap ingredients I've been buying I probably won't bat an eyelash at the saffron's price. :) At least I won't have to wait for UPS/USPS/FedEx! :)
 

IanT

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Lovehound said:
IanT said:
tonight made some ginger saffron/coriander rice
Recipe???

I made Ian's balsamic glazed salmon and his Caesar dressing last night and both were delicious! In fact I expect I'll add his Caesar dressing to my cooking recipe website if he doesn't mind. :)

I might have tried the pasta but I don't have the pasta making device. Perhaps if Ian will tell us what application it has in soapmaking I might buy one. ;)


Looking forward to that ginger saffron/coriander rice recipe. After all the soap ingredients I've been buying I probably won't bat an eyelash at the saffron's price. :) At least I won't have to wait for UPS/USPS/FedEx! :)
:D You are more than welcome to include the recipe on your site ! :)... I LOVE that recipe :)... made it myself! (well I mean how much different could it be fomr most other caesars...I think the difference is the real anchovies as opposed to the paste and the fresh-ness of the ingredients (and mortar and pestel!))

For the saffron/Ginger rice...it was sooooo easy, I have a rice maker machine so I just added a little ground saffron (from grenada..they have some GOOOD spices!), some sliced fresh ginger root, and a little bit of ground coriander with salt/pepper (M&P!)....comes out nice and yellow and mmmmmm good, you could remove the ginger pieces or grate it up but I like to remove them and eat them on the side after the meal...nice digestive aid :)

as for the pasta machine, they actually arent that expensive, i think you can get one online for like $45-60?? the one i have is a VillaWare AlDente pasta maker, I suppose you could use it to roll soap too when hand milling, that would actually be pretty cool but a pain to clean lol

even if you dont have the device you can still make pasta the old fashioned way, same recipe, just make a box-cutter out of a wooden square frame and piano wire or guitar string to the width you want the pasta (spaghetti, linguini, capellini etc...) then you roll the dough out with a rolling pin, once thin enough to your desire, you just take the flap of dough, lay it over the box cutter and then roll it through with the rolling pin, itll fall through nice and cut :) then you could either dry and save or cook fresh (and you havent tasted pasta unless youve ate it fresh like that...trust me...mmmmmmmmmmmmm good!! :) )



Thanks for the compliments! :) perpper and LoveH!!!

:D

I love to cook! :)
 
G

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I wonder if it wouldn't be better to saute that ginger in a bit of EVOO? Then add to rice before cooking.

You reminded me I didn't use the mortar and pestle. I just used my pepper grinder right into my food processor (Cuisinart Mini-Prep, also works great for shredding soap, no big deal to clean and return to food use).

Yeah, rice cookers are great. I've got the Cuisinart model and it makes rice effortlessly. Just measure the rice and water, put the top on, push the button, and *click* 20 minutes later and your rice is ready to eat, and the cooker keeps it warm for as long as you like.

I recall now reading up on pasta, you just roll the dough and slice it with a knife, producing dough spirals, and then you unwind them and voila you've got spaghetti/linguini/whatever.
 

IanT

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yup! I actually never thought of infusing olive oil with ginger, but that would probably be awesome and add more of a consistant flavor to the rice! :)
 
G

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Just brainstorming here, coarsely chop the ginger and then whack the heck out of it in a processor (I like my Mini-Prep) then just slightly saute it, throw the rice on top and saute that a bit too, then throw in the coriander and saffron, stir it a few times and put it in the rice maker with the water, hit the start button. Just thinking out loud here. :)

I've got all the ingrediments... Maybe I'll try that tonight. Something different sounds nice.

I wonder if my saffron is any good. I hardly ever use it and this one has no date on it. At least a dozen years ago I started date coding my spices with a permanent marker, like this month it's 508, next month 608... I either forgot the saffron or I've had it a dozen years, and every good cook knows that spices lose their flavor over time. Isn't saffron mostly for color anyway?

For similar reason, get the coarsest spices you can find and grind them up in a mortar and pestle at time of use. This is for any less experienced cooks reading this. I know Ian already knows this.
 

IanT

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:D that woudl be really good, ususally i use one of those zest graters or really fine cheese graters for grinding up the ginger, turns into a pulp you wouldnt even need to process!!
I bet the saffron is still ok...even though its been years.

I always say, start with larger and ground down....FINER=FLAVOR! :)

that works for herbs, spices etc :)

let me know how your rice goes tonight!! :)
 
G

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With my changes in the rice recipe the rice came out looking great and smelling great, but the taste was rather bland. It needs some kind of *BAM!!!* to kick it up a notch. I'll have to think over exactly what that might be.

Please note this is my version of Ian's recipe, not his original recipe, so any responsibility for the blandness is my own fault. :)
 

IanT

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Try some Cayenne (sp?) pepper :)...I like to add some cayenne, red pepper flakes, and sometimes Ill infuse the EVOO w/ habaneros and woooooooohoooooooooo that stuff has enough bam to make your eyes tear lol I love the indian/hispanic spices mmm mmm
 
G

Guest

Actually I think I did toss some crashed red peppers on it at the table... Cayenne is rather one-dimensional and I think this taste needs more dimensions.

Actually I was thinking of tossing the rice with some dries shredded coconut pulp and throw in some currants before going in the rice cooker. :)

Maybe some chopped dried sugared ginger? :twisted:
 

IanT

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if your going to go with the shredded coconut, My mother used to do this...I think you add some onions, roasted red peppers, and some fennel and mmmmmm its good :) kind of like a tropical thing :)
 
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