About this recipe:Making green-coloured fresh pasta at home is simple and tasty: add some spinach to the dough and you'll get a nice coloured and flavoured pasta from which you can make anything from lasagne sheets to tagliatelle. Make sure to squeeze off all the water from your spinach or the dough will be too soft and impossible to work with!
Makes: 450 g fresh pasta (tagliatelle for 4-5, lasagne for 6-8)
80g fresh spinach
300g '00' or plain flour, plus extra for dusting
3 large eggs
1 pinch salt
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Method Prep:20min › Extra time:30min › Ready in:50min
Wash the spinach and remove any tough stems. Place in a pan with 2 tablespoons of water, cover and simmer for 10 minutes, or until wilted, stirring once. Drain and let cool. Squeeze out the water, getting the spinach as dry as possible.
Use a knife to very finely chop the spinach.
Meanwhile, place the flour on a marble or wooden work surface. Make a well in the centre and crack in the eggs Add the salt and spinach.
With a fork, gently beat the eggs and incorporate the spinach and surrounding flour. Gradually, the flour and the eggs will mix, creating a runny batter.
With a scraper, take the remaining flour and bring towards the centre, incorporating it into the batter-like mixture. The scraper will prevent your hands from getting sticky and will help the dough become homogeneous. If the dough is too stiff, add water, 1 tablespoon at a time as needed.
When the mixture forms a ball, start kneading with your hands. Flatten the ball, stretch and fold from the top towards the centre; turn 45 degrees and repeat.
Knead for about 10 minutes until you get a smooth and soft dough.
Shape into a ball, place in a bowl and cover with cling film. Chill in the fridge for at least 1 hour before using.
Roll out the dough with pasta machine or with a rolling pin.
If using a rolling pin...
Divide the dough into 3 equal portions. Take the first one, flatten a bit and roll with the pin 5 to 6 times. Turn the dough 45 degrees and roll again, 5 to 6 times. Keep rolling and turning in the same way, till the dough reaches a consistent thickness.
To make lasagne: roll out the dough to a 1mm thickness and with a pastry cutter or a knife cut out rectangular sheets according to the shape and size of your baking dish. Transfer to a floured cloth and air dry for about 30 minutes. If thin enough, you won't need to blanch before baking.
To make tagliatelle: roll out the dough a bit thicker, about 2mm. Flour the dough generously, then roll in a loose cylinder. Slice the cylinder into 7mm portions. Once cut, quickly unroll the strips and transfer on a floured tablecloth. Toss generously in flour, so they do not get sticky. Air dry 30 minutes before cooking for 3 to 5 minutes in plenty of salted, boiling water, or until al dente.
If using a pasta machine...
Divide the dough into 3 equal portions. Flatten the first piece and pass through the thickest setting of the pasta machine. Dust with more flour, fold in half like a book and repeat 3 to 4 times - always flouring, folding and passing through the thickest setting - until the dough is smooth in texture, even in size and no longer sticky.
Move the pasta machine to a middle setting and pass each sheet through once. Move to the next to the last setting and pass through once.
For lasagne: cut the long strip in half. Pass the first half through the very last and thinnest setting. You'll obtain a very long and thin sheet. Place on a floured cloth. Repeat with the remaining dough to obtain 6 long sheets.
Cut out the sheets to fit your baking dish. Air dry for 30 minutes, then assemble and bake. You don't need to blanch before filling.
For tagliatelle: Keep the dough a bit thicker, passing only through the next to the last setting and skipping the thinnest setting. Cut each sheet in half.
Add the attachment to the pasta machine and pass the strip through the tagliatelle attachment. With one hand roll the machine handle and with the other collect the pasta. (You can use other attachments, such as tagliolini or pappardelle, to get different shapes.)
Gently place on a floured tablecloth, tossing with some more flour. Air dry for 30 minutes before cooking in plenty of salted, boiling water for 3 to 5 minutes, or until al dente.
Air dry the pasta overnight, dusting with more flour if still wet. Once completely dry it will become stiff. Store in a paper bag and use within a couple of days.