Pasta Dough for Ravioli
4 cups AP Flour
4 tablespoons Salt
4 tablespoons Olive Oil
In a large bowl, combine flour and salt. Create a well in the center, and add eggs and olive oil. Begin to incorporate flour into the liquid ingredients with a fork, adding more flour with each stir.
Work flour, eggs, and oil together with a fork until the dough starts to come together. When the fork is no longer sufficient, plop your dough out onto a floured surface, and work it worth your hands.
For me, when you’re making pasta dough by hand, you sort of can’t over work it. Get that gluten.
Ideally, let your dough rest overnight. If you’re in a televised cooking competition, use immediately. But seriously, don’t use the dough for at least a half hour. Letting the gluten relax will allow the pasta to stretch and will make it easier to work with; if you rush it, the dough will be resistant, and you will be bummed.
When you’re ready to use the dough, allow it to sit on the counter for a couple minutes while you get your dough rolling machine, rolling pin, flour, and ravioli mise en place together.
Flour the counter. Cut the dough ball in half (keep the other half covered,) and roll with a floured rolling pin to about the width of the largest setting of your dough roller. Work the dough through the roller on each setting 2 or 3 times starting with the largest size. (duh) Use the back of your hands to move the dough. Only work with a length of pasta that’s comfortable for your space. If you need to work the dough in 3 or even 4 batches, do that. Keep unused portions under a dry kitchen towel.
I use a ravioli press, which makes ravioli production move much more swiftly, knocking out a dozen at a time. Use water to connect the two sheets of dough and press the ravioli into the mold using a small rolling pin. I store each batch on a floured sheet tray, for which I’ve made space ahead of time in the freezer, while I continue to work through the dough.
*When you have a recipe that calls for so few ingredients, make sure each of them is the best you can find. Try to use local eggs from happy chickens. It makes a difference.