PASTA DOUGH

Pasta Dough for ravioli, lasagna, fettucini (called a’lagana by us) or linguini.

Put 3 cups flour in the bottom of a wide bowl or on a large wooden board (see if you can find a tipo 00 Italian flour. We get Marino's at Formaggio's). Make a well in center. Break 2 good sized eggs into center, add 5 half egg shells of lukewarm water, 2 teaspoons of olive oil, a pinch of baking powder and a pinch of salt.

Then start beating the egg mixture with a fork and slowly let the flour get pulled into the egg mixture. You do it this way because ......it may be too much flour and you want to stop incorporating the flour when the dough is soft but not sticky. Too much flour will make the dough hard. Switch to wooden spoon if you need to.

Then gather the dough and move to a board and knead a bit until it is nice and soft. If it is sticky...put some flour on the board and slowly gather/knead it into the dough until it isn't sticky. THEN: put a bowl over the dough and let it REST for a good half hour or more. Then cut off a piece and roll out with rolling pin before putting it through the widest pasta machine setting. And so on down to the next to the last setting. (the thinnest setting is a bit too thin). Cut the sheets as you want them for lasagna or ravioli....or fettucini, or linguini.

It's nice to get the hang of this. So worth it. Also, don't make it for a crowd at first. Then it's not such a production. One more thing, on the recipe card grandma wrote out, our step grandmother, Elisa from Lucca, used mint, not parsley in her ravioli filling! That was a revelation.

(If you don't have a pasta machine......roll it out with a heavy rolling pin until it is nice and thin and drapey. Takes a lot of strength and patience as it keeps pulling back together.)