Now let me get it out of the way and say that I am 100% not, I repeat, NOT a videographer. On a scale of 1 to Martin Scorcesse, I am giving myself a 1 just for the pure fact that I could figure out how to record a video! Still photos are my jam, but videos? Not so much.
At any rate, I recently posted a story on my Instagram account of something scrumptious I was cooking for dinner, using my homemade pasta nests. I had a lot of people send me messages asking me all kinds of questions about how and why I do things. I myself am a visual learner, so I thought a video following me throughout the process would be the best way to explain the method to my madness.
I hope you find this video useful (despite the quality) and if you have any questions feel free to leave them in the comments below. Also, don't mind my crazy won't-stop moving hands...
If you don't have a pasta recipe on hand, you can check out my basic homemade pasta recipe using a food processor. It never steers me wrong!
Anything homemade from scratch is superior to store bought, that's a given. If it weren't, wow, I would have a lot of extra hours in my day! There are certain foods where there is a drastic difference between store bought and homemade, while others are less noticeable. Pasta is one of those night and day foods when it comes to homemade and store bought. This is why I have cut out store bought pasta out of my life when it comes to noodles, lasagna sheets, manicotti, spaghetti, and fettuccine. I haven't learned how to make specialty pasta types such as bowtie, ziti, or bucatini, so for now those are still a store bought item for me. But, I have no doubt I will learn how to do it.
Homemade pasta is quite possible one of the easiest things to make, and once you get the hang of it, you can really do it quickly. It can be made in less than two minutes with a food processor, then after the resting period, I am able to roll out a pound with a hand crank and cut it in less than ten minutes. That is twelve minutes well spent in my book.
Below is a very basic pasta recipe, where I show you how to make it in a food processor to expedite the process. Believe it or not, humidity has a pretty significant effect on how much liquid the flour needs, so depending on the day eggs alone aren't enough and you may need some water to get the proper consistency.
The one store bought grocery item that can always be found in my pantry is roasted red peppers. I absolutely love them. I love them in quesadillas, pizza, omelettes, frittata, risotto, you name it. So this year I thought, "okay that's another staple that I'm going to eliminate my dependency on the grocery store for and do it myself"! Roasting them is super easy, and canning them is as well. All you need is a pressure cooker.
Because my peppers from my garden seem to be struggling to ripen, I decided I didn't want to risk not being able to can any by waiting. So I hit up the farmer's market in the next town and purchased 11.5 pounds of various colored peppers and got the party started.
I don't know if there is another vegetable that is as versatile when it comes to canning as the homely tomato (it will always be a veggie to me!). This year I planted seven varieties, and am well on my way to preserving them in more than that many ways. My Nana is the one who taught me how to make sauce several years ago, and to this day I still do it the way she taught me. Like pretty much everything else in my life, I have taken the foundations I was taught and expanded upon them. This has led me to new varieties of tomatoes as well as new preparations for me to preserve.
I preserve different tomato types in different ways depending on which they are best suited for. Some make better sauce, others hold their shape better for diced, whole peeled, etc. I love finding new varieties and new ways to preserve the bounty of the summer, especially with pantry staples. It is a ton of work to say the least, but having shelves full of every type of tomato style you need in the dead of winter cannot be beat!
I have officially reached that point of winter where I am over braised meats, gravies, and heavy meals. I am craving simple, fresh, and delicious food, not to mention the quicker meals. Even though it is winter, with the help of produce I froze in the fall and what I can get from the grocery store I can get a little taste of summer in the dead of winter! One thing I love about stir fry is the versatility. There is no right or wrong way to make it. Use what you have on hand, or is in season. It's the perfect opportunity to change up the flavors while having the same dish. And the fact that you get to make it all in one pan is definitely an added bonus.
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