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Posts tagged pasta
fresh pasta with mushrooms and fennel
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we are introducing a new series of mini posts on the blog. not much talking, no fuss, just a great recipe. so without further ado we'll just jump right into it.

to feed 4-5 you'll need:

  • 500g fresh pasta (buy from the deli or find our recipe here) - we made very thick fettuccine
  • 1 bulb fennel (with greens)
  • 1 white onion
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 350g button mushrooms
  • 350g oyster mushrooms
  • 250ml heavy cream
  • 150ml milk
  • 1 shot of pastis or pernod
  • 2 handfuls of baby spinach
  • salt & pepper
  • chives and/or dill as topping
  • parmigiano (optional)

in a large pot, bring salted water to a boil. the fresh pasta doesn't take longer than 3 minutes, so add in the pasta last minute when everything else is ready. if necessary, wash the spinach; cut the fennel into thin wedges and keep the greens for later. peel the onion and chop it finely. clean the mushrooms and - depending on their size - cut them into halves or quarters. they shouldn't be too small so they don't lose too much liquid and go soggy. now heat the butter in a pan and add the onion and fennel once bubbly. once the fennel is golden, add the mushrooms and salt and pepper to taste - cook for about 3 minutes only. at this point, pop the pasta into the ocean water, cook for 3 minutes and drain. turn off the hob and put the pasta back into the pot, add cream, milk, pastis and spinach and mix. when the pasta starts absorbing the cream (should only take 1-2 minutes) carefully fold in the mushrooms, give it a quick stir and serve immediately with fennel greens and chives. we like to top it with a sprinkling of parmigiano but this is totally optional.

k & l

how to: homemade pasta
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while we were in tuscany last year, we had the chance to make pasta with la viallas cook, luigina, the queen of pasta. so you can believe us when we say this recipe is good, like reeeaaally good and pretty much foolproof. in these pictures we made lasagna and cut the dough into large rectangles, but the recipe works for any type of pasta. if you're making some kind of linguine or spaghetti we recommend running the dough through a pasta machine. any other kind can easily be cut by hand and there are lots of tutorials online to show you how. making fresh pasta is 100% worth it as the taste and texture just does not compare to anything store bought.

for about 500g you'll need:

500g of flour (type 550/all-purpose)
4 eggs
100g durum wheat semolina
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

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step 1:

pile up the flour on your worktop and hollow out the middle. add in the eggs, semolina, olive oil and a pinch of salt. using a fork, mix the ingredients and gradually start taking in the flour from the sides.

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step 2:

then proceed to kneed with your hands until you are left with an even, compact dough. as you can see from the left picture, the dough might be a little sticky in the beginning but will eventually become nice and smooth and shouldn't stick to your fingers. once you are left with a nice big ball of dough, cover with a clean hand towel and put aside to rest for 15 minutes.

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step 3:

lightly flour your worktop and use a large rolling pin to roll the dough as thin as possible. it can help to flour the rolling pin as well to stop the dough from sticking to it.

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step 4:

cut the dough into the pasta shape of your choice using a knife or a pizza cutter. to make lasagna sheets we did large rectangles, but you can do almost anything from farfalle to fettuccine.

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step 5:

now that you have the pasta of your choice, it's time to cook it. bring salted water to a boil, add in the pasta and cook for about 3 minutes. then drain and serve with a delicious sauce worthy of your homemade pasta! we covered our lasagna sheets with a hand towel (in order to soak up the excess water) before layering them with the rest of the ingredients and popping them in the oven...

...to become what is quite certainly the best lasagna we've ever had.

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