Saltbush + Mushroom Handmade PastaRecipe courtesy of one of our Grow / Source / Eat subscribers, Alex. Ingredients:
100g plain flour
- 100g semolina (plus extra for dusting)
- 4 eggs
- Large handful of grated parmesan
- 150g button mushrooms or similar
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 small brown onion
- Small handful of saltbush
Combine 100g of plain flour and 100g semolina. Make a mound of the flour on a clean work surface and create a palm-sized well in the centre with your fingertips.
Crack two Melbourne Food Hub eggs into the well and add to tablespoons of olive oil.
With a fork, whisk the eggs. The mixture will pick up some flour as you do this, and when the egg whites and yolks are combined start pulling in more flour as you continue to whisk. When the mixture is the consistency of thick custard, use your hands to cover it with the rest of the flour and mix with the fork to combine into a dough.
Knead the dough on a floured surface until you can form the dough into a very smooth ball – it should be soft but not sticky, and bounce back slowly when you gently press a thumb into it. Kneading will take a while – keep at it!
Cover your smooth ball of dough with plastic wrap and let it rest in the fridge for 30 minutes.
Once your dough has rested, use a pasta machine (or a rolling pin and persistence) to roll the pasta dough out. On an Avanti machine, thickness 3 is about right. Then cut it into thick strips of even length, dust liberally with semolina to prevent the noodles from sticking, and let cure while you boil the water and get your sauce ready.
While the dough rests, prepare the mushrooms.
Roughly chop Melbourne Food Hub mushrooms, and sautee them in onion, garlic, black pepper, and Melbourne Food Hub saltbush. No need to add salt – the saltbush does the work for you in the sauce, and the pasta itself will be salty too.
Grab another two Melbourne Food Hub eggs and whisk the yolks together with a big handful of grated parmesan and a generous pinch of black pepper to form a paste. Set aside.
Cook the pasta in a pot of boiling, salted water. (The water should be as salty as the ocean! There’s no other salt in this recipe, so don’t be afraid of adding a big handful of salt to the pasta water.) When the pasta is nearly al dente (very firm), scoop out 1/4 cup of the pasta water. When the pasta is cooked to your liking, drain and toss with the egg yolk paste and a splash of reserved pasta cooking water.
The heat from the pasta will melt the parmesan and cook the egg, and the starchy pasta water will pull it together into a sauce.
Top with the mushrooms and enjoy!