Making Pasta

I’ve got four very loud children here this morning so I’m jumping on the computer before the Minecraft fest begins…..

Making Pasta

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Pasta is pretty popular in this house and when my friend, Mel, said that she had a pasta machine that had been redundant since she got it 10 years ago I felt it was time to borrow it and put it to good use.

Teenboy was keen to help so we went for it.

The pasta was made with 6 eggs and 600g of 00 flour in the magimix then rested for about 45 minutes. I think the traditional way is to mix it on the bunker (worksurface) with your hands – the magimix was fast and efficient.

The pasta needs to go through the machine lots of times to get it thinner and thinner and it gets longer and longer each time.  We had it with fresh pesto – it was gorgeous, the jury is out on the actual pasta.  We did not hang the pasta out to dry at all, I am not sure if that’s crucial or not.  It was hard to know when it was cooked too.  Teenboy is up for making more with the spaghetti cutters  to see if we can perfect the process. He got really into making sure it was thin enough and even, he was chief roller.

If you are inspired to have a go and use the pasta machine that you have been keeping safe and sound in the cupboard for years then here’s how to do it.

 

first roll

first roll

 

 

last roll before other rollers

last roll before other rollers – where did that all come from?

tagliatelle roller

tagliatelle roller – so fast it goes fuzzy

 

The pesto was half a small packet of pine nuts, toasted in a pan, a big handful of basil, a clove of garlic, a big glug of olive oil and about 30g of parmesan type cheese. I did use the pestle and mortar to crush the pine nuts then a stick blender to whizz the pesto together.

pounding the pesto

pounding the pesto

the final dish - everything tastes better eaten al fresco

the final dish – everything tastes better al fresco

 

Does anyone know about the hanging out stage?  I wonder if it is only necessary if you are not using the pasta immediately or if you should always do it.  The only thing I have to hang it on is the clothes dryer with tea towels on it – I might try that next time.

 

Car spotting is a bit of a habit of mine –  here’s one I saw in town the other day, It’s very similar to my sister’s old car that took me to my wedding.  Gotta love a Mini.

Mini Cooper, x-reg in immaculate condition.

Mini Cooper, x-reg in immaculate condition.

In my other life I have a fleet of vintage cars and someone to look after them for me, my only choice is which one to drive each day….

Flower Patch

 

the patch ready for planting

the patch ready for planting

How could the last post have been 11 April? That really that is a long time and I’m glad to be back.

After the works last year I was determined to have more flowers in the garden this year and to make the most of what was already there. Up at the back right was a bit of garden that Dad had as his wee veg patch and he had bravely planted some asparagus. I waited and waited for it to come and show some spiky presence for 2 years but nothing at all happened, all that did happen was lots of weeds and the little plastic label with ‘asparagus’ in Dad’s distinctive hand writing was hidden amongst them. I have kept the label but I did give up all hope of asparagus ever growing. A flower patch was my vision and here’s how it is going so far.

All the seeds are in the ground, invisibly doing their stuff.

All the seeds are in the ground, invisibly doing their stuff.

In the spring I planted 2 daisy type plants which were super cheap from Ikea, 2 Euphorbia and lots and lots of seeds. Sweet Peas were planted at the bottom of a very rickety home made cane pyramid effort.  At the time it felt like nothing would ever fill that space and that I would need to wait forever.  The sweet peas took a really long time to do anything but now they are huge and starting to flower.  I have picked every single flower so they look rather boring now. I’ll get a photo once more flowers are out. I think this all planted at the beginning of April, probably about the time I did my last post.

teeny tine sweet peas

teeny tiny sweet peas

Now there are loads of cornflowers of different colours and a couple of other plants that are probably weeds or may be flowers on their way – I’m wary of pulling anything up in case it is going to be a flower.

bloomin cornflowers - or nearly, I've chopped all the ones in bloom for the posy

bloomin cornflowers – or nearly, I’ve chopped all the ones in bloom for the posy

 

Yesterday I made my first actual posy using flowers from my flower patch, what a delight, it smelt amazing.  The best part was being able to use it as a gift to a friend.  The garden needs a lot of work but I am already thinking about the next little flower patch and what flowers I will grow.

The first harvest of sweet peas and cornflowers

The first harvest of sweet peas and cornflowers

 

The only produce that comes from our garden is rhubarb and apples which have been there for years.  The rhubarb is amazing, just keeps on growing with no pampering at all.  Did you know that farmed forced rhubarb grows so fast in the dark sheds that you can hear it! Amazing fact for the day – apparently it sounds like squeaking.

First rhubarb harvested - made a splendid crumble.

First rhubarb harvested – made a splendid crumble.

 

Well, that’s all for now, do have a look at my Pinterest pages – I’ve added loads, for some reason I cannot get the link to work but you can press the logo at the top right to go straight there.

Have a great weekend and big love to a special couple who got married today, you know who you are, x

What’s with everyone running?

Maybe it’s my age and stage but everyone seems to be running.  It’s getting to epidemic proportions now, is it that it is relatively cheap (once you have your trainers)? Is it that it is easy to do – you simply go outside and do it? Is it that we are getting so much information about how we need to be fit to live longer? Is it a new challenge that does not involve counting how many pints/tequilas/shots  you can down in as short a time as possible? Is it good for your mental health? Or is it actually FUN? (no)

The ‘Running like a Girl’ book I read for February helped me understand a bit about why people run but the only way I would know for sure was to try it myself.  I feel like I am coming out about being part of a cult here, yes, I have been know to go running or ‘funny running’ as I call it because endurance has not come easy to me and I do like a wee 2 minute walk to break the hell run up.  I am not sure it’s for me because it make me ache and it takes an enormous amount of thought and effort to go.  Sometimes I feel good about having done the funny running but not always. I still don’t really get running,  I’m afraid. Maybe I need to do it more….

 

Running appears as a theme in the most unexpected places, can you spot anyone who has won Gold?

 

 

Belle and Sebastian are a band I cannot get enough of, they are brilliant.  If, by some bizarre chance, you don’t know them, check them out on whatever app/gadget you can, they’re amazing and Scottish, of course.

This fits in with the Year in Books Theme,

 

Now have a great weekend, hopefully listening to a bit of Belle and Sebastian, you can’t go wrong. xx