Drying Homemade Pasta is a great idea for many reasons. Besides saving time and allowing you to stretch out your pasta into delicious meals, drying your pasta will help you retain the nutrients and flavor in your favorite pasta brands. When you prepare it from scratch, pasta tends to lose these valuable nutrients within hours of being cooked. Drying your pasta allows you to store for much longer, and helps it maintain the same shape and texture when you cook it later on.
But in today’s article, we’re not discussing the pre-made dried pasta you can buy in the grocery store, but instead how to properly dry the fresh pasta once it’s already prepared from the kitchen. The key to properly dousing your pasta with olive oil, or any cooking oil is to make sure that the water and/or flour mixture is well-distributed all around the surface of the pasta. If it isn’t, it will stick to one side or the other and the result will be an unpleasant dish. (And who wants to eat soggy pasta?)
Know The Process
For optimum results when cooking, it’s best to allow your pasta dough to rest after it’s been cut, no more than half an hour. For the best results when drying homemade pasta, try to avoid cooking in very hot (around 250 degrees Fahrenheit) water. This will cause the pasta to become dry and flaky. If it’s particularly dry and tough, just use extra virgin olive oil to make pasta dressing or put a pinch of salt over your recipe if you are hoping for a salty taste. It will still have the natural flavors of the ingredients, but won’t be altered by the addition of extra salt.
Get The Baking Rack Now
For your first-day pasta drying rack, you’re probably going to want a standard old baking rack. These racks can also work for making other baked items like chicken or fish. Just make sure they are sturdy enough to handle your project.
You should look for a sturdy rack that will keep your dry ingredients from moving about and resting on the bottom, which causes sticking. Most are made from wire mesh, which makes for easy movement and less friction. You also want something large enough to accommodate a good amount of dry ingredients without being too crowded. A 14-inch diameter plate will serve well for most projects.
Another essential component of a dry pasta drying rack is an airtight lid. It’s a good idea to choose a sturdy and durable lid. You may even want to consider an automatic lid lifter, especially if you tend to cook multiple dishes at once. This makes it very convenient for when you have a lot of dishes to wash up!
It’s best to use a high quality non-stick cooking spray for these dishes to help them stick together better. You can also add the food coloring you prefer to give your finished product the look of your favorite pasta shapes. I would recommend using an all-purpose spray for this purpose, as the color won’t interfere with the taste or texture. Once the paste has dried up, you should wipe it with a slightly damp sponge just to be sure that there are no bits left. It only takes a few minutes and it will prevent your project from having a bad outcome.
To finish your dish, simply add a bit of extra virgin olive oil and mix in your desired herbs and spices to your freshly prepared pasta dough. If you would like to add other ingredients to it, such as tomato sauce, it is simple to do so after you have mixed everything. Then fold in the cooked pasta dough over the flattened surface of the floured board until smooth and even. You will now have a delicious and easy dinner that is ready to serve.