I have a wonderful 1950 copy of Betty Crocker’s Picture Cook Book. The first couple of pages show pictures of the company’s test kitchens. One is a red and white “polka dot” kitchen. It’s a dreamy place populated by an adorable, immaculately dressed and coiffed housewife. She is enjoying an ironing session against the cheerful backdrop of a yellow wall.
The kitchen’s photo caption says :
“….Gayest, most colorful of all, with stainless steel counters and a laundry unit for experimental work with appliances”.
How dreams have changed, don’t you think?
We are crushed under a mountain of boring chores. We have so little time to do things with our own hands, to do things for ourselves, to just take the time it takes.
Sometimes I rebel to the crush and I make some pasta. When I make pasta I take my time. It’s mine, totally.
I find it truly therapeutic. It’s creative, it’s intensely relaxing and it makes other people happy. It’s much, much better than ironing
Maltagliati is a pasta shape which was originally made from scraps left over after making other pasta by hand. It’s particularly popular in Emilia Romagna where it’s served with beans. In my attempt to be a health-lover housewife I have made these maltagliati with 50% whole-wheat flour. Be sinful if you wish and use 100% white flour, it’s good for you anyway.
- 100 gr. / 3.5 oz Italian 00 or pastry flour
- 100 gr /3.5 oz whole-wheat or farro flour
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
Make the pasta dough in 3 minutes using my food processor recipe. Cover with a tea towel and let it rest at least 10 min. Whole-grain flours are more difficult to work with than white flours. They tend dry out and crumble and that’s why I add olive oil. If you are not an expert pasta-maker try first with white unbleached flour and use whole-grain next time.
Roll the pasta into 25- 30 cm (10-12 inch) long sheets using a pasta machine. Please study carefully the method explained in the pasta dough recipe.
Place the pasta sheets on a large wooden board or on cotton tea towels until dry but not brittle, 10-20 min. Using a pastry wheel cut the sheets into irregular 2.5 x 5 cm (1 x 2 inch) lozenges.
The whole-grain version pairs well with some robust sauce like norcina, porcini or tuna. The white flour version is wonderful in a lemon sauce. You can also use it in my fabulous bean soup instead of taglierini. If using for soup, cook the pasta in water first and then serve with the soup. It will cook in one minute.
Serves 2 with sauce and 4 with soup.