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Fresh Pasta

Asked by Adam100. Answered on 9th January 2014

Full question

I made the fresh pasta dough from Nigella Bites. My problem is when I have my dough ready it sticks to the machine when I'm rolling it. I use all-purpose flour and organic eggs, in the proportions suggested. Any suggestions, Please help!

Our answer

Nigella's fresh pasta dough (from Nigella Bites) uses a ratio of 1 egg to every 100g flour. This is a fairly classic recipe and the dough should not be too sticky. However as all flours vary a little, and for the US everyone tends to measure cups slightly differently, you may find that if the dough feels very wet when you bring it together then you should knead in a little extra flour. You could also try increasing the amount of flour to 2 1/2 cups if you are using the US recipe. It should feel smooth and silky and pliable, but not sticky.

When you roll the pasta out you can first flatten the dough and dust it with a very little flour. But go carefully as too much flour can also make the dough difficult to roll thinly in the pasta machine.

The only other thing we would mention is that all-purpose flour is not ideal for making pasta. The pasta dough needs to stretch and so needs a high gluten content and the gluten content in all-purpose flour is a slightly low. Ideally "00" flour should be used as this is made from durhum wheat which has a high gluten content. It is also finely milled to give a smooth pasta dough. However if this is not available then you may get better results from using a bread flour (strong white flour) or a mixture of all-purpose and bread flour.

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