Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Multi-Grain Fettuccine

Fresh, homemade pasta is always a treat. It seems to taste even better not only because it is, but because you know that someone worked harder to make it for you.

I've always been impressed with homemade pasta, and was excited - and at the same time a little intimidated - by this month's Gluten-Free Ratio Rally challenge of homemade pasta. Jenn over at Jenn Cuisine is the host for our rally posts this month, so be sure to check out her rally post where she also lists the links to the recipes all the other food bloggers participating this month have posted. There are some really amazing dishes that you don't want to miss out on, including Jenn's tagliatelle with smoked salmon. Oh yum!

Logo designed by Anile Prakash
If you are interested in why I'm involved in this rally each month and what it's all about, check out my first rally post of peach poppy seed bread, where I explain my excitement and reasons for getting involved. I'm learning a lot and encourage you to give ratio baking a try - it gives you the freedom to make a reality nearly any food idea you have in your head. I have a list of the rally posts in their own category in the index.

I was in for some serious work with the homemade pasta challenge. Prior to a few weeks ago, I'd never attempted homemade pasta even with gluten. I'd always wanted to, but never did. And now I was going to make it gluten-free having no firsthand experience with the way it was "supposed" to be done.

I still have a long way to go before any kind of perfection, but I can safely say that I eventually turned out a great-tasting pasta with a good texture that didn't fall apart during or after cooking and didn't get mushy. The entire family agreed it was good stuff.

I learned three major things in this pasta-making challenge:
1. If you don't have a pasta roller, you can forget about your workout that day because you'll get a good one rolling your pasta.
2. It's most definitely worth the extra work
3. I need a pasta roller

You see, without a pasta roller I just couldn't get the pasta rolled quite thin enough to suit me. So you'll notice it's a little thick - though not nearly as thick as the first trial! I ultimately got the best luck rolling it between parchment paper, but it still didn't get as thin as I wanted it. It worked, though, and was definitely edible.

You may also notice that some of the pieces aren't very long. I got careless a few times during my rolling and let the paper bunch up a little and crease. When I tried to peel the pasta off the paper, sometimes it broke along the creased areas. Also, the dough wasn't rolled out in an even length, so I had some short sides.

I called this "fettuccine" but in reality some of the noodles are much wider and some much more narrow than that. (I need a pasta cutter, too!) I cut the noodles using a smaller pizza wheel, but I never have been good at straight lines. I honestly don't think I could draw one if I had a million bucks at stake. Bottom line is, it's pasta. You can cut it/shape it any way you choose. I thought about attempting a ravioli, but I decided I just wanted this to be simple. I needed this to be simple. 

And I wanted to get the true taste of the pasta, so I served it in a simple way without sauce. There will be plenty of time in the future for me to play around with more homemade pasta creations - starting with some of the recipes from my fellow rally bloggers. After I get a roller.

I used Michael Ruhlman's pasta dough ratio of 3 parts flour: 2 parts egg for this recipe (9 ounces flour: 6 ounces egg).

I'm not even going to attempt giving you a projected prep time for this because it's going to entirely depend on whether you have a pasta roller or are using a rolling pin, how familiar you are with making pasta and whether you have kids running through your kitchen, among other things. The cook time will also vary according to how thin you are able to roll your pasta, so I'll only give an estimate.

Multi-Grain Fettuccine
1 oz. tapioca starch (29 grams)
1 1/2 oz. teff flour (43 grams)
2 oz. sweet rice flour (57 grams)
4 1/2 oz. brown rice flour (128 grams)
6 oz. eggs (3 large eggs)
1/4 oz. extra virgin olive oil (6 grams, or 1/2 tbsp.)
1/2 oz. water (14 grams, or 1 tbsp.)

(The topping I used is simply some zucchini sliced into sticks and sauteed in some extra virgin olive oil and kosher salt, and seasoned with black pepper. I placed it on top of the pasta and topped the zucchini with grated parmesan. It was fantastic.)

Sift flours together in large bowl and make a well in the center. 

Add oil, water and eggs into the well and begin to incorporate the liquids into the flour. I used my stand mixer with the dough hook for most of this, but Ruhlman suggests using your fingers to do all the mixing. I did end up using my fingers and hands after most of the liquid was absorbed.

When the dough is at a good consistency, make a disk out of it, wrap it in plastic wrap and let it sit for about 15 minutes.

Cut into 4 equal pieces and roll dough out between two sheets of parchment paper or in a pasta roller as thin as you'd like it. Cut using a pastry cutter or small pizza wheel, or pasta machine.

Have ready a large pot of well-salted boiling water with some olive oil in it, and place pasta into boiling water. Cook until al dente or as tender as you'd like it. My cooking time varied between about 4 minutes to 9 minutes, and all of the pasta held up well.

Drain pasta when finished cooking and then toss with a little olive oil. Top with whatever you desire.


And don't forget to check out all the other delicious homemade, gluten-free pasta recipes posted in Jenn's post! (And thank you, Jenn!)

Brooke from B & the Boy! made Ravioli w/strawberry filling and chocolate berry sauce
Caneel from Mama Me Gluten Free made Multi-grain fettuccine
Charissa from Zest Bakery made Linguini with smoked salmon and creamy vodka sauce 
Erin from The Sensitive Epicure made Ravioli w/ shrimp, spinach, mushrooms, & cheese filling in browned butter
Gretchen from Kumquat made Vegetable lasagna
Jenn from Jenn Cuisine made Tagliatelle with smoked salmon, peas and parmesan
Lisa from Gluten Free Canteen made Lokshen kugel
Karen from Cooking Gluten Free made Homemade gluten free pasta
Mary Fran from Frannycakes made Pasta with pink vodka sauce
Meaghan from The Wicked Good Vegan made Vegan gluten-free homemade pasta, in creamy artichoke tagliatelle
Meg from Gluten-Free Boulangerie made Fettuccine with sun-dried tomatoes
Pete and Kelli from No Gluten, No Problem made Tortellini
Shauna of Gluten Free Girl made Gluten free fresh pasta
Silvana from Silvana’s Kitchen made Lemon-poppy pasta with tomato, corn and basil
Tara from A Baking Life made Fazzoletti with wild mushrooms and spring onions
TR from No One Likes Crumbley Cookies made Tomato basil pork raviolis


  1. Thanks for supporting the gluten free family.

  2. we started on the same page. :) only I went a little wild in an attempt to get my child to eat pasta. :) It looks gorgeous, and I think the non-perfectness of it is what makes homemade pasta more fun.

  3. Gluten free bread flour: Of course! :)

    Brooke - thank you! It was fun, and it will be happening more often in this house now!

  4. Beatuifully simple but delicious! I love that the thinly sliced zuccs echo the pasta. And I love the irregular strips too. Gives it more of a rustic feel. :)

  5. Thanks, Charissa! I like the rustic feel, too. :)

  6. Come on over and borrow my pasta machine. Your flour combo looks like a good one to try.

  7. Thanks, Karen - I'd love to give it a try! :)

  8. i'm unfortunately with you in the no-pasta roller kitchen. my noodles would have undoubtedly looked just like yours... but that's what homemade is about, right?! well done.

  9. Your pasta looks so delicious and wholesome! Who cares if it's a little thick or the strands aren't the same size? As you said, bottom line is, it's pasta. Simple food at its best. Next time you make it (if you don't have a roller yet), you could make maltagliati - the "badly cut" pasta that's all the irregular pieces left over from making other pasta shapes. Rough & rustic on purpose!

  10. My hat is off to you!!! Great job! I'm inspired to make my own now.

  11. Gretchen, thank you!

    Tara, I didn't know about maltagliati - thank you! (I married into a part-Italian family but I need to learn much more!) I'm liking this rustic on purpose idea more and more!

    Ginny, thank you! Go for it - you won't want to go back to the store-bought! :)

  12. Great job, it looks so lovely with it's homemade feel. This is the type of pasta you should get at restaurants not souless perfectly machine made ones!

  13. I missed the ratio rally this time around, but your pasta looks awesome!

  14. Marla - Thank you! No doubt your pasta would be amazing. Hopefully we'll see you next time! :)

  15. I tested your recipe tonight, and it just didn't work for me. Maybe it was just too hot in my kitchen. The pasta stuck to the parchment paper. The cut pieces wouldn't come up off of it. The flavor was great though. I just pulled off chunks and boiled them. Maybe I should have chilled the dough out. It might also have worked better for me as a ravioli type of pasta.

    1. I'm so sorry it didn't work out for you! Thank you for letting me know. I'm glad the flavor was good. I wonder if chilling might help as well, and perhaps greasing the paper or dusting with flour?


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