By Jodee Weiland
Italian basil pesto is a favorite of mine, but homemade fettuccine with Italian basil pesto is so delicious that it far surpasses all my other pasta dishes in flavor for me. I love homemade pastas and when we travel, we often search out Italian restaurants that serve homemade pastas. There’s something about homemade pastas that makes any Italian dish one hundred percent better. Think about it for a minute. In earlier times, people did not go to the store to purchase their pasta, but instead, they made it from scratch. Now who doesn’t know that homemade is always better than store-bought?
When I was little, I would watch my mother make all kinds of homemade pastas. She never had a pasta machine to make her pasta and did it all by hand completely. In another blog, I will show you how she made her homemade cavatelli, which was truly work intensive, but for now I chose to make homemade fettuccine with a simple non-egg pasta recipe. I prefer non-egg over recipes with egg because I think they are not as heavy. You can do it either way, but non-egg pasta is my personal preference. I chose to serve it with my own Italian Basil Pesto recipe, which I love, but you can serve it with any sauce you choose.
Homemade Fettuccine with Italian Basil Pesto
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup warm water
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Italian Basil Pesto (see my recipe or choose another sauce)
The best way to mix the dough for your pasta is to put your flour in a mountain shape on a flat surface or in a large bowl. Create an opening at the top like a volcano. In the opening, put the warm water and olive oil. Start by whisking the oil and water together and then gradually, start to blend in the flour from the sides with a fork. Continue to do this until completely blended and too sticky to mix further with the fork. Then fold the dough together with your hands until blended together into a smooth dough. If needed, add a little more warm water, just a little at a time. Once done, set the dough aside for about fifteen minutes to relax.
When ready, cut off a piece at a time, covering the rest with a damp towel. Following the directions on your pasta maker, make your fettuccine or spaghetti, whichever you prefer. Different pasta machines will vary somewhat in their directions, so be sure to read the directions carefully for your machine. This will make about one pound of pasta.
You can also make fettuccine by rolling out the dough to the desired thickness, dusting it with flour, and then folding it over one or two times before slicing. Once folded, slice the dough with a sharp knife into straight lines to make fettuccine noodles. Whether with a machine or by hand, hang your pasta from a pasta drying rack until ready to cook and serve. When ready to cook, put the pasta in boiling water just as you would with any pasta, but note that fresh pasta cooks much faster and may take as little as three minutes to cook. It also usually rises to the top of the water as it cooks. Test a noodle to see if done al dente. When ready, drain the water and serve your pasta with your choice of sauce.
Homemade Fettuccine with Italian Basil Pesto is absolutely delicious and will change how you look at pasta forever. We love it, and served with a nice Chianti, a fresh loaf of crusty bread, and a small side salad, you will feel like royalty. Homemade pasta makes store-bought pasta seem so ordinary, no matter which sauce you choose. You can have it with Italian Basil Pesto, Bolognese, marinara, or any other sauce you may prefer. It makes no difference which sauce you choose because the fresh pasta is what you will remember. Give it a try, and you will see exactly what I mean, so enjoy!