Basic Egg Pasta Dough

Recipe courtesy of Lidia’s Italian Table © 1998 by Lidia Bastianich

Serves 6

  • 4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 6 large eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
  • Warm water, as needed

On a marble or wooden work surface, pile the flour into a mound. Make a well in the center of the mound that goes all the way down to the work surface. In a small bowl, beat the eggs, salt, and olive oil together with a fork until blended, and then add them to the well. Continue beating the egg mixture with the fork, gradually working the flour from the sides of the well into the egg mixture. As you work, the egg mixture will become thicker, and the size of the well will expand. Continue beating until there is just a thin ring of flour around the egg mixture and the dough becomes too thick to mix with a fork before almost all of the flour is incorporated. Drizzle a tiny amount of the warm water over the egg mixture and continue mixing. It is possible that you will not need any water at all. Work the remaining flour into the dough with your hands just until a rough, firm dough is formed. Rub your hands together to remove as much dough as possible and add that to the rest of the dough. Shape the dough into a rough ball and set it aside.

Sprinkle your hands liberally with flour, rubbing them together to remove any remaining scraps of dough from your skin. With a knife, loosen any dough and flour from the work surface. Pass these scrapings through a sieve so you can reuse the flour and discard the scraps in the sieve. Be sure your hands are clean, and flour them lightly.

Once you have formed a rough ball, it is ready to knead. Flour a marble or wooden work surface. (for effective kneading by hand, the surface should be hip-high; this will allow you to put your body weight into the kneading motion.) Press the heel of one hand deep into the dough, keeping your fingers high. Then press down on the dough while pushing it firmly away from you: the dough will stretch and roll under your hand like a large shell. Turn the dough over, then press into the dough, first the knuckles of one hand, than with the other; do this about ten times with the knuckles of each hand. Use the knuckles of your forefingers especially during this process. Then repeat the stretching and knuckling process, using more flour if needed to prevent sticking, until the dough is smooth and silky, for about10 to 20 minutes. Roll the dough into a smooth ball.
Place the dough in a small bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let the dough rest for at least 1 hour at room temperature or up to 1 day in the refrigerator, before rolling and shaping the pasta. If the dough has been refrigerated, let it stand at room temperature for at least 1 hour before rolling and shaping.

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Nutrition Information

Basic Egg Pasta Dough

Servings per Recipe: 6

Amount per Serving

Calories:  378

Calories from Fat:  56

Total Fat:  6g

Saturated Fat:  2g

Cholesterol:  186g

Sodium:  265mg

Potassium:  156mg

Carbohydrates:  64g

Dietary Fiber:  2g

Protein:  15g

Sugars:  0g

Vitamin A:  5%

Vitamin C:  0%

Calcium:  4%

Iron:  27%

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