To create and cook good homemade Mugello fresh pasta, exercise and technique are essential. It is true that on the market there are machines that do almost everything by themselves. However, the total goodness of a handmade tagliatella, gnocco, ravioli or tortello from Mugello is unmatched. But to do this you need to practice and not a little.
Mugello&Tuscany have thought of cooking classes precisely for the enhancement of homemade Mugello fresh pasta. We really want to make it a cultural enrichment of a holiday in Tuscany. However, we would also like to lay the foundations for a holistic experiential intake by the tourist. The moments spent with us must be unforgettable and our chefs work precisely with this in their minds.
Good homemade Mugello fresh pasta is of course a kind of egg pasta. So we must first decide whether we want to make taglierini, tagliatelle and lasagna or stuffed pasta such as ravioli, tortellii and tortellini. To start you need the right tools: a wooden surface and rolling pin plus the traditional ingredients. Speaking of egg pasta, we must first decide what we want to make. It could be taglierini, tagliatelle and lasagna or stuffed pasta such as ravioli, tortellii and tortellini.
In the first case we will equip ourselves with 0 flour and whole eggs (3 eggs for 320 grams of flour); in the second we prefer durum wheat semolina flour with whole eggs and yolks (280-300 grams of semolina, 2 whole eggs and 4 yolks). It is essential to make sure that the flour is always sifted and the eggs are used at room temperature.
Then to make our special homemade Mugello fresh pasta dough, the classic cone or volcano of flour is formed. Eggs are best opened separately. Once you are sure that they are good, you can pour them into the flour cone.
It is a good habit not to use all the flour from the very beginning. In fact, each flour absorbs differently. If the dough is too soft at the end, you can add it when needed. As for the eggs, they must be beaten quickly with a fork until the yolk and egg white are perfectly mixed. At this point the flour is incorporated from the inner circle always with a fork. You have to continue like this until it is time to carry on with your hands.
At this point the egg mixture is covered with all the flour and then turned over on itself. It is a step that must be repeated several times. Eventually the egg will be absorbed by the flour. The dough can thus be worked well with your hands without sticking. Pasta should always be handled delicately, otherwise it tends to crumble.
Usually to knead you use the thumb and the lower part of the hands bordering the wrist. The dough should not be crushed downwards, but rotated towards the outside. Another important thing is that you must not knead for too long, otherwise the dough becomes too smooth.
If it becomes too smooth it tends to lose its pleasant roughness which allows it to better hold the condiments. When the dough has been built, it must be left to rest covered for about half an hour.
The density of the dough must be rather dry if you want to make noodles. On the contrary, if we want to use it for filled pasta, it must be a little softer.
To roll out the dough, the rolling pin must be held with the fingers towards the inside of the pastry board. The dough must be rolled out with a vigorous movement, using the whole hand starting from the lower part of the palm and then sliding the rolling pin for a length of a few tens of centimeters. At the beginning, you start from the center of the dough, then you turn it continue turning it always by a quarter.
This is where we need to be more patient and precise. And it is here that many abandon the craftsmanship of the process to switch to the machine. In addition, you need to have plenty of flour to prevent the dough from sticking to the pastry board or rolling pin. If everything went well it will be possible to rotate the dough to make it all of the same thin thickness.