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Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Flour and Water

Seeking redemption for my disgraceful gnocchi execution of the previous day, I returned to the flour bin armed with only a rolling pin and a dash of tap water. Stripped down to its bare essentials, pasta is made of flour and pretty much only flour, with the addition of just enough water to turn it from a powder to a dough.

I went with tradition and so with semolina. Semolina is the milled endosperm of durum wheat, a grain that is high in protein and thus in elasticity, and thus, in turn, possessing the makings of a properly al dente noodle. I kneaded it into a smooth and silky ball, let it rest for a couple hours, and then rolled it out and cut it into fettuccine-like strands. I tossed it with a little more flour to prevent sticking, and let it dry slightly in the cool kitchen.

As the pasta was meant to be the star of the show, I made a starkly restrained sauce: chopped canned tomatoes and a smashed clove of garlic warmed in a glug of olive oil. And that's it.

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