Fresh egg noodles in Italy are a gorgeous, rich golden color that is hard to replicate elsewhere. This is because of the intense red of the yolks (indeed, in Italy the yolk is referred to as il rosso, “the red”). I’m still not sure what inspired me one day to add just a little bit of pumpkin puree to my pasta dough—actually it was buttercup squash, which has sweet, dense, deep orange flesh. I happened to have some leftover in my fridge from a pumpkin cheesecake that I had made for Thanksgiving. Into the dough it went. The resulting pasta sheets were even better than I had imagined, golden in color and subtle in flavor—a perfect match for pumpkin lasagne. But you can also cut them into pappardelle or fettuccine and serve them with a simple tomato sauce.–Domenica Marchetti
LC Stealthy Surplus Pumpkin Note
What to do if you find yourself with leftover pumpkin puree? If you’re feeling a little, oh, we don’t know, intrepid, try stirring some into mac-n-cheese. It’ll bring an ever so subtle sweetness to dinner–as well as a bolder orange hue and a healthier you.
Pumpkin Pasta Dough Recipe
Hands-On Time: 15 minutes | Total Time: 45 minutes | Makes about 1 pound
- 1/3 cup pureed cooked pumpkin or winter squash, such as buttercup or kabocha (or substitute canned pumpkin puree)
- 2 large or extra-large eggs
- 2 to 2 1/4 cups “00” flour or unbleached all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons semolina flour, plus more for the work surface
- 3/4 teaspoons fine sea salt
- Pinch freshly grated nutmeg
- 1. In a small bowl, whisk together the pumpkin and 1 egg. Set aside.
- 2. Place 2 cups “00” flour, the semolina flour, salt, and nutmeg in a food processor. Pulse briefly to combine. Add the pumpkin-egg mixture and pulse briefly. Add the remaining egg and pulse until the mixture forms crumbs that look like small curds. Pinch together a bit of the mixture and roll it around. It should form a soft ball. If the mixture seems dry, drizzle in a few droplets of water and pulse briefly. If it seems too wet and sticky, add additional flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, and pulse briefly.
- 3. Turn the mixture onto a clean work surface sprinkled lightly with semolina flour and press it together with your hands to form a rough ball. Knead the dough by using the palm of your hand to push the dough gently but firmly away from you, and then fold it over toward you. Rotate the dough a quarter turn, and repeat the pushing and folding motion. Continue kneading for several minutes until the dough is smooth. Form it into a ball and wrap it tightly in plastic wrap. Let the dough rest at room temperature for 30 minutes before using.
- 4. To form lasagne noodles, stretch the dough as thin as you comfortably can, no thicker than 1/16 inch. If you lift a sheet with your hand, you should be able to see the shadow of your hand through it. Because lasagne noodles are layered, they need to be very thin. Using a sharp chef’s or similar knife, cut each sheet into rectangles about 4 inches by 5 inches.
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Pumpkin Pasta Dough Recipe © 2011 Domenica Marchetti. Photo © 2011 France Ruffenach. All rights reserved.