Monday, January 10, 2011

Under the Willow Tree - Winter Day Wonders :: Fresh Pasta Recipe

Wow! What a winter we're having! When we moved to our country heaven on earth seven years ago, we chose the foothills of the Smokey Mountains in east Tennessee for the mild climate. This year, we broke records. It started snowing on Thanksgiving day and it feels like it hasn't stopped! 

I am not complaining. One thing I missed when I lived in Florida, was the change of seasons and this year, for the first time since I left my hometown of Buffalo, NY some 23-years ago, we had a white Christmas! It was gorgeous! 

What I love most about these wintry days is the time it gives me to cook and bake. The kids have had a bunch of snow days too so I get to spend time with my youngest daughter, Cassie, who also loves to cook with me. Yesterday, as the news was issuing Winter Storm Warnings, and the state was declaring Level 3 state-of-emergency for our area, Cassie and I broke out the pasta machine and decided to take full advantage of the time we were spending cooped up. We lit a fire in the kitchen fireplace, and got to work! 

Under the Willow Tree embraces the simplicity of country living. None of this is scripted, this is our life and we're enjoying every minute of it. One of the things I love most about country living is the closeness that's developed within my family. We've gradually become like those families you saw on television 30-years ago and to be honest...I am proud of that! I feel so so much pride when my daughters stand next to me eager to learn all of these old fashioned traditions. It brings me comfort knowing that they'll be passed on to my grandchildren. 

So anyway, on to the fresh pasta! You'll find this recipe on the Under the Willow Tree Community! (

Fresh Pasta


  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons water (add more 1 tablespoon at a time to make a stiff dough)


  1. In a medium sized bowl or Kitchen Aid, combine flour and salt. Make a well in the flour, add the slightly beaten egg, and mix. Mixture should form a stiff dough. If needed, stir in 1 to 2 tablespoons water.
  2. On a lightly floured surface, knead dough for about 3 to 4 minutes. With a pasta machine or by hand roll dough out to desired thinness. Use machine or knife to cut into strips of desired width.  
We used a manual pasta machine for ours. 

In a medium saucepan, boil about 2 quarts of water, place your pasta in the boiling water for approximately 3-4 minutes.  Fresh pasta cooks much quicker than the pasta you buy in a box at the supermarket.  

** To store your pasta, let it dry for  about an hour then place in a plastic bag and refrigerate for up to 3 days.  You can freeze the pasta for up to 3 months. 

The more you work with the dough the better you'll become at this whole process. If you don't have a pasta machine you can roll your dough to the desired thickness and then cut it into strips with a sharp knife. The sky is really the limit with how you can work with this recipe. 

Add your favorite sauce and ENJOY!!

The one thing I like most about fresh pasta is the fact that I know what's in it. Unlike store bought pasta, there are no preservatives or other junk that you find in mass produced product. This is a simple recipe that ensures a healthy end result. 

Stay tuned for our upcoming homemade cheese series! That's right, we're going to be making cheese! 

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