Sunday, 11 December 2011

Chicken Noodle Soup

My grandma bought this pasta roller for my parents years ago. My mom isn't the kind of person that likes to spend her time in the kitchen, so when I came to school, I took the pasta roller with me. Making your own pasta isn't as fancy and sophisticated as it sounds, all you need is eggs and flour. 

I used 1 egg and about 1 cup of flour. Start with half a cup and add more as you go. When the dough comes together, knead it for 5-6 minutes. The more you knead it the chewier the pasta will be. After a nice smooth dough has formed, pass it through the pasta roller on the widest setting several times. I had to do it about 5 times until the dough came out smooth.

Take the width in a little and pass the dough through the roller again. Make sure you flour the dough really well to prevent it from sticking to the roller. Keep on doing this until you reach the lowest setting, or until your desired thickness.

You'll end up with a really long sheet of pasta. I cut mine in half to make it easier to work with.

 Flour the entire sheet of pasta and roll it up into a log. Using a really sharp knife, slice out thin strands. The dough will absorb a lot of water during the cooking process so it will expand quite a bit in width.

Toss in more flour to prevent them from sticking to each other.

For any soups or stews, I always start with mirepoix, which is a combination of diced onions, celery, and carrots. Cook the vegetables in butter until they are translucent, about 10 minutes. Add in flour to make a rue and cook for another 2 minutes. Pour in about 8 cups of chicken stock and bring it to a boil. When it comes to a boil, add in some pre-cooked chicken. The soup should thicken up just a little from the rue.

Cook the pasta right before serving. It only takes 2 minutes to cook and may become too soft if it sits in the soup for too long.

Fresh pasta cooks almost instantly, which kinda justifies the time it takes to make it from scratch. The texture is really amazing, soft yet chewy. If you don't have a pasta roller, regular dried pasta will work just fine. 

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