After returning from my travels from half way across the world and recovering from terrible jet lag, I thought this would be the perfect time to share a recipe I had been working on just before I left. Making homemade gluten free pasta had become a ritual for me. I kept on attempting to make different pasta doughs till I found the perfect blend. By the end of my journey, I realized that coming out with the perfect pasta dough doesn't only depend on the right blend of ingredients. In fact, it is more about folding and rolling the dough out over and over again, till it builds strong structure and body.
It is definitely easier to make pasta with normal flour, as the gluten produced from the wheat gives the dough its real structure and stretchiness. The main difficulty with gluten free pasta is that it can be very fragile and probably won't have the ability to stretch out as easily as regular pasta. However, after weeks of experimentation, I can proudly say that this recipe is a winner. I have tried it three times, just to make sure that it definitely works, and it did not disappoint.
To be completely honest, I don't think my pasta would've turned out as good as they did if I hadn't used a pasta maker. With the pasta maker, it was easily able to fold and keep running it through the machine, so that it evenly builds some structure. So if you don't have a pasta maker, then you might have to use those muscles and a rolling pin to keep folding and rolling it out.
Now moving on to the second most important part of pasta, the sauce! When it comes to pasta I love the different variations of cream and rose sauce, but my absolute favorite is a spicy arrabbiata. For this recipe, I will share one of my Prawn arrabbiata recipe. Arrabiata basically means "angry" and it resembles the heat from the chillis and redness of plump tomatoes. I love the addition of prawns and capers, but don't hesitate to play around with your favorite additions and Make It Your Way!
Generally, pasta is a very wholesome and filling dish, so you want to keep it as simple as possible. However, at the same time, you want to give it enough flavor that your guests will keep diving in for more. I hope you will like this simple and delicious recipe and share it with your friends and loved ones.
Pasta Dough (3 servings) 1 1/4 of All-Purpose Gluten Free Flour 2 tbsps Xantham Gum (only if your flour blend does not include it) 1 tbsp Corn Flour 3 large Eggs 1 tbsp Vegetable Oil (or Olive oil) Pinch of salt
Spicy Tomato and Prawn Sauce 4-5 Cloves of Garlic 1 Red Chili or 1 tbsp Chili Flakes (adjust to your liking) 150 grams Prawns (around 10 pieces) 300 ml Canned Tomato Sauce (passata) 2 small fresh Roma Tomatoes 1 cup of chopped Parsley 1 1/2 tsp of Salt 1 tsp Black Pepper 1 tsp Lemon juice 1 tbsp capers (optional) 2 tbsps Olive Oil
STEPS First, we are going to marinade our prawns and set it aside. In a bowl, add prawns, 2 cloves of chopped garlic, 1 tbsp olive oil, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper, 1/2 tbsp chili flakes and mix well. While your prawns marinate, we will get started on the pasta dough.
In a mixer or food processor, mix all pasta dough ingredients. Once well blended, tip the flour mixture onto a clean counter top and start kneading it together with your hands. You want to keep kneading till you end up with a nice and soft dough. If your dough seems too wet for any reason, add in some flour and keep kneading. I would also keep another beaten egg on the side, in case your dough is too tough, you need to get some moisture in. Keep in mind that depending on the type of flour blend you use (and the size of your eggs), you may get different results, but if this recipe doesn't work, shoot me a message and I can share a few tips!
Since this is a gluten free recipe, you don't have to let the dough rest. So at this point, once you have a nice and soft dough, cut it into four halves. One at a time, flatten your pasta, dust some flour, and at a slow pace, run it through the widest setting on the pasta machine. Remember, it is a fragile dough to begin with, so if it tears or rips, just start again and try to guide it through the machine with your hand. At this point, keep folding and repeating this a good four to five times, making sure to dust some flour on every time. You want to end up with a smooth and long pasta sheet. An important tip would be to remember to guide the pasta sheet through the machine each time and not let it dangle on the machine itself.
Once you are happy with the thickness of your sheet, you can either hand cut or run it through a spaghetti cutter. You should end up with beautiful long strips of pasta. Once you are ready to cook the pasta, just drop it into boiling water with 1 tbsp of salt for 3-5 minutes at most. You could get the pasta ready before, or as you are cooking the sauce.
Now to the easy part, cooking up the spicy tomato sauce. In a pan, heat up 1 tbsp olive oil over medium heat. Now add in the remaining garlic, the rest of the chili, and fry for 1 minute. At this point, add in your prawns and cook them for 2-3 minutes, just till they have changed into a white color. Now pour in your tomato sauce, fresh tomatoes, capers, salt, pepper and 1/2 cup of the parsley. Mix well and lower the heat to cook the tomato sauce for about 5-10 minutes. The longer you cook the sauce, the more flavor it will develop.
At this point, taste and adjust seasoning. Once you're content with the balance of flavors, add the lemon juice, the remaining of the parsley (leaving some for garnish) and mix well. Finally, add in your pasta, coat it in the beautiful sauce, drizzle some olive oil and parsley, and serve!
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