Tuesday, April 15, 2008

1st Annual KAF Weekend!

It has been a desire of mine for many years now to take a class at The King Arthur Flour Baking Education Center in Norwich, VT. I was trying to think when I fell in love with their products but it has been for a while now.

The way this weekend came to be is sort of a bittersweet tale because it was suppose to be our annual girl's weekend away. Unfortunately it proved to be super hard to get the 5 of us together on one weekend. To make a long story short when I called up to found out information about available classes last week...this past weekend was the only one available to us. So Heidi, Jenn and myself packed our bags and headed up to Vermont for the weekend.

We were able to get the last spots in their Pasta Primavera class that was on Sunday. We learned to make 2 different recipes for pasta dough and 3 different shapes of pasta. I am going to show you will the pictures Jenn took of how to make the pasta and their shapes.

The ingredients for the pasta dough is very simple: Flour (we used two different types AP and Durum Flour) and Eggs. In the class we put them into a bowl because our teacher informed us that they have had run away eggs which created a big mess. When we are home she told us we could do this right on the place where you will knead the dough after it is mixed.

After kneading the dough for about 10 minutes until it is soft and not sticky. It must rest for at least 15-30 minutes.

Once the dough has rested you will knead it again with the help of a pasta machine. Our teacher told us what the "rule" is for cutting the dough into a more manageable size is...the amount of eggs you used in making the dough is the number of pieces to cut it too. Since we made a 2 egg dough we cut the dough in half to give us 2 pieces. You put the machine on the number 1 setting (largest size) and run it through 8 times. Each time you folding the dough in half and crank it though. Then after that you start to stretch the dough...working from 1 to setting 9 on the pasta machine but this time you don't fold the dough in half.

Once you have the dough to the correct thickness you cut out your shapes for raviolis or you run the dough through the cutters for fettuccine or spaghetti.

Our teacher told us of a place in Italy that is famous for a ravioli shaped in a hen which is what we tried to recreate in the class...Jenn was brave to try that shape out...while Heidi and I stuck to the boring round ravioli shape. We filled our ravioli with roasted asparagus and cheese...the way it was served in Italy was with a poached egg yolk in the middle of the filling.

You cook the ravioli in a soft boil more like a high simmer so they won't break apart. We got to try ours with a little bit of a brown butter sauce and some bread.

The next pasta we made is called Garganelli which is shape resembles penne. The dough is made the same way but has an added ingredient of some parmigiano-Reggiano cheese in it. The only step that is different is the shaping.

You cut a square out of the dough that is 2x2 in size which you can do with either a cutter or a pizza cutter.

Then you use a gnocci board and a dowel to shape it into the penne like shape: Lay the pasta square diagonally on the board and place the dowel at the corner of the pasta square. Curl the corner of the pasta square facing you around the dowel and, with a gentle downward pressure, push the dowel away from you and off the board. The pasta will slide right off the dowel when you tilt it.

1 comment:

PJH said...

Michelle, so glad you enjoyed your weekend here! That pasta you made looks scrumptious (Hmmm, maybe I should take that class sometime...) Thanks a lot for posting the story of your weekend, plus pictures—we appreciate it, all 168 of us King Arthur employee-owners! Cheers- PJ Hamel, KAF test kitchen


Related Posts with Thumbnails