Tagliatelle is a type of pasta rooted in the tradition of Italy’s northern region of Emilia Romagna. The term “tagliatelle” means “to cut”. After this pasta is cut into ¼-inch thick ribbons, it is cooked and combined with your favorite sauce.
In Italy, the women who taught me to make this truly spoiled me. I mean, I make and eat homemade pasta exclusively. Enjoy these divine tagliatelle, and your pasta palate will change forever.
Prep time: 55 to 60 minutes
2 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour
1/3 cup durum wheat semolina
4 large eggs
1. In an 8-quart glass or porcelain mixing bowl, stir to combine the flour and semolina. Make a well in the center of flour mixture. Add eggs to the well and beat with a fork. Gradually stir the flour mixture from the sides of the well into the eggs until almost all the flour is absorbed.
2. Using your hands, knead the dough in the bowl until it is smooth and elastic. Transfer the dough onto a floured surface and cover it with an inverted bowl; let it rest 10 minutes.
3. After 10 minutes, cut off 1/4 of the pasta dough and cover the remaining portion (it will be cut into 3 more pieces later).
4. Using slightly floured hands, pat the pasta dough to a ½-inch thickness.
5. With the pasta machine dial on Setting No. 1, slightly push the blob of pasta into the rollers while turning the handle. Stretch out the pasta.
6. Fold the pasta in in thirds; lightly flour the pasta.
7. On Setting No. 2*, roll out the pasta. Fold the dough in half and lightly flour it.
8. On Setting No. 3, roll out the pasta and lightly flour it.
9. On Setting No. 4, roll out the pasta and lightly flour it.
10. Lay the pasta sheet on work surface and, with a pasta wheel, cut the pasta crosswise into 2 or 3 pieces (6 to 8 inches long). Lightly flour the pasta sheet.
11. On Setting No. 5, roll out the pasta. Lay it out on lightly floured, flat surface to dry. Continue rolling instructions with remaining pasta dough, breaking off a piece three more times.
12. As you work with remaining pasta, flip over the previous pieces that have been laid out to dry and lightly dust them with flour. This will speed up the drying process.
13. After all the pasta has been laid out, take the first pieces you worked with and roll them through the ¼-inch wide “tagliatelle” cutter. Place them on a lightly floured surface to dry. Repeat the cutting process until all the pasta has been cut into tagliatelle. Lightly flour the tagliatelle, gently picking them up and arranging them to dry in wavy shapes on a flat surface with some spacing in between the pieces.
14. Meanwhile, prepare your favorite sauce and bring a 6-quart pot of water to boil. Add the tagliatelle to the boiling water with 1-1/2 teaspoons salt and cook 5 to 7 minutes.
15. Drain the cooked tagliatelle in a colander and then transfer them to a large serving bowl. Add 2 to 3 ladles of sauce, gently toss.
16. Divide the tagliatelle among four pasta dishes. Place a bowl of grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese on table for your guests.
Serve with your favorite red or white wine.
*As the setting number of the rollers increases, the opening becomes narrower in order to stretch the pasta sheets.
Text and Photograph ©2012 Nancy DeLucia Real