I posted some homemade gluten free egg pasta shells on Instagram the other day and some of you were asking me for the recipe, but I felt like it needed a bit of work to be perfect. Well, here’s the final result which I’m really happy with! 🙂
I know what you’re thinking, making pasta from scratch probably sounds like way too much work. But it’s actually really simple (only 4 ingredients needed: a good all purpose gluten free flour blend, eggs, olive oil and a touch of xanthan gum) and you don’t even need a pasta machine!
In reality most of the preparation time comes from letting the dough rest and then letting the pasta dry for a bit. It’s really not difficult and it tastes amazing. The dough is really easy to handle as well, not too sticky or messy at all. In reality it’s no different to making ‘real’ fresh egg pasta and as a bonus, it’s a bit more nutritious than your standard shop bought pasta too.
1. Don’t skip the resting time.
As tempting as it may be to get it done quicker, this step is important. It gives the flour time to properly absorb the liquids and produces a better texture.
2. Don’t use random single flours.
You have to use a standard all purpose gluten free flour blend for this recipe to work. I highly recommend Schar ‘Mix It Universal’ if you have access to it where you live; it’s the best for gluten free egg pasta in my opinion. But of course, it will work with other blends with slight adjustments (as explained in the instructions).
3. Add more xanthan gum if your blend doesn’t contain any.
As instructed in the ingredients list below, add extra xanthan gum if your flour blend doesn’t already contain any (or a thickener). The Schar blend I’m using already contains a similar thickener and we’re adding some more on top in this recipe.
4. Make sure your pasta is VERY THIN.
The trick to good homemade pasta is making sure the dough is rolled very thin. You should be able to somewhat see your fingers through it when holding the rolled dough in your hands.
For filled pasta:
Check out my ravioli / tortellini recipe HERE. 🙂
Gluten Free Egg Pasta Recipe:
- 140g plain gluten free flour blend (I used Schar 'Mix It Universal')
- ½ tsp xanthan gum (add 1 tsp instead of ½ if your blend doesn't already contain a thickener like xanthan gum)
- 2 eggs (100g)
- ½ tsp olive oil
- Optional: add a touch of ground turmeric to make them more yellow
RESTING TIME #2 (for the pasta): 15 mins or more
PREPARE THE PASTA DOUGH:
- Mix the flour and xanthan gum together in a bowl.
- Then add the eggs and olive oil and mix with a fork until mostly combined, then knead with your hands until you have a smooth, crack free dough ball. Note: you can sprinkle a tiny bit of extra flour if the dough seems too sticky, but be careful not to overdo it. If the dough is too dry, add a tiny bit more oil or egg white until it’s just right.
LET THE DOUGH REST:
- Wrap the dough with cling film (to prevent it from drying) and let it rest at room temperature for about 30 minutes. You can also prepare it in advance; it will last in the fridge for a couple of days.
Note: don’t skip this step as it’s important for the texture to be right; it gives the flour time to absorb the liquids properly.
ROLL THE DOUGH:
- Divide your dough into 4 portions. I find it’s way easier to work with a small portion of dough at a time. Otherwise it’s difficult to handle such a large piece of dough once flattened and it can be a pain to get the thickness right and even.
- Sprinkle some extra plain flour all over your work surface, roll one portion of dough into a ball and place it on there with another sprinkle of flour on top. Note: keep the rest wrapped up in cling film in the meantime so that it doesn’t dry up.
- Then start flattening the dough with the rolling pin and aim for a square shape as much as possible. To make sure it’s not sticking, keep flipping the dough upside down on and off and spread the loose flour evenly underneath each time. It should be very thin. You should be able to somewhat see your fingers through the dough when picking it up. Like in the picture collage above.
NOTE: despite starting out with a sticky dough, it should actually be very easy and comfortable to handle without sticking to your work surface or rolling pin at all. Feel free to add more flour throughout the process if necessary.
CUT THE PASTA (for tagliatelle):
- Cut the pasta into thin strips with a knife or pasta/pizza cutter.
- Sprinkle some extra flour on top and carefully toss your fresh pasta around in it to until evenly coated.
- Let it sit/dry for about 15 minutes.
COOK YOUR GLUTEN FREE EGG PASTA:
- Bring a large pan of water to boil with a generous dash of salt.
- Once the water reaches boiling point, add the pasta and stir to make sure it’s not sticking together or at the bottom. Note: make sure the water is boiling / DO NOT add the pasta to cold water. 😉
- Cook for 4 to 7 minutes, until al dente (it should be soft, but with still a certain firmness left to it). Note: if using pre-made pasta, just follow the cooking time on the packaging.
- Drain in a colander and set aside.
Note: the cooking time may vary depending on what pasta shape you make; after 4 minutes keep testing the pasta every minute until you reach the perfect texture. You know it’s ready when the pasta is soft, but not mushy. It should still have a certain firmness to it.