Fresh Egg Pasta Dough
- 500 grams tipo 00 flour, plus more for kneading q.b.
- 454 grams (24 to 26) egg yolks
- To begin, place the flour on your wooden worksurface and create a barricade with a center sanctuary for your yolks that is 5 to 6 inches in diameter but not more. If you create too much space, your barricade won’t be strong enough to hold the yolks as you begin to incorporate the flour. To avoid any additional risk to your barricade, mix, but do not beat, your yolks before adding them to the well. Kick off by adding half of the yolks to the well and use a fork to incorporate the inner layer of flour, stirring in a continuous motion around the circumference to combine. Continue adding the rest of the yolks, incorporating the flour as you go. If you bust through your barricade, not to worry. Use your bench scraper to catch the egg mixture and fold it back into the flour, doing this at every edge until you have a mixture that is thick enough to contain itself. Set your tools aside, roll up your sleeves, and get to work kneading. The dough will be sticky at first, so as you work it, continue to remove the dough that clings to your hands and return it to the mass.
- The dough will begin to firm up as the gluten is activated by kneading, but if it feels a touch too dry and is not integrating (this can happen when the environment is drier, such as during the winter or when you’re working in an arid climate), gradually add about 1 tablespoon room-temperature water to loosen it. The kneading motion is simple, but it does take some time to get the rhythm right. You essentially want to fold the dough in on itself, pressing down and away from your body with the heel of your dominant hand, relying on the weight of your body to do so. (You can hold the edge of the dough closest to you with your other hand to keep it in place as you stretch it away from you.) Rotate it 180 degrees, fold, and press again. Repeat this rotating, folding, and pressing motion until the dough is smooth and relatively firm to the touch, 8 to 10 minutes. Use your bench scraper to clean off any pieces of dough that clump and stick as you’re kneading. Lightly dust the board with flour if needed; be careful not to add too much, as it will dry out the dough.
- When properly kneaded, the dough should resemble the texture of Play-Doh and should spring back just slightly when poked. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and set it aside for at least 30minutes. This allows the dough to become more pliable. If you’re not forming pasta until the evening or the next day, place the dough in the refrigerator and remove it 20 minutes before you plan to roll it out so it returns to room temperature. Use the dough within 24 hours.