Inside my bucket list, a certain region in Italy almost sits at the top of it. Because of its breathtaking landscape and rich history, I have been dreaming of visiting the Tuscan region with my family. I always imagine the sun setting down and my family and some friends drinking a good bottle of red vino and eating my favorite Italian spaghetti dish with fist-big meatballs, then and there will be the only time that I say “This is life!”.
I love Italian cuisine because they allow the natural flavors of their ingredients to empower their dishes. From pizzas to pastas, Italian dishes represent and highlight what their local markets and farms can produce and even though I am residing nowhere near Italy I do my best to taste and create something Italian-inspired. I do not know if there is already an existing recipe but here is the recipe of my favorite Italian pasta:
Fresh Pasta Ingredients:
- 4 cups of unbleached all-purpose flour
- 4 large eggs
To start, use 3 cups of the flour and create a well. Break the eggs and beat them in the middle of the well and by using a fork begin incorporating the egg to the flour and use the remaining 1 cup of flour to fully incorporate the 2 ingredients.
You can now start kneading the mixture with your hands especially with your palms. Let it rest for 5 minutes then continue kneading as well as dusting the board you are using to prevent the dough from sticking. The end-result characteristic should be elastic and sticky. Wrap the dough with a plastic wrap and let it rest for 20 minutes at room temperature. If you want designs for your pasta use necessary tools but since we are using it for a spaghetti dish, use pasta maker for desired thickness and length.
- 2 medium-sized onions (diced or sliced)
- 4 cloves garlic (minced or sliced)
- Olive oil
- ½ kilo ground beef
- ½ kilo ground pork
- ½ kilo tomatoes (sliced)
- 1 kilo tomato sauce
- ½ kilo of fresh button mushroom or 500 grams of canned button mushroom
- Fresh and dry basil leaves (depends on your liking)
- Homemade pasta (see above for instructions)
- Pepper and salt (to taste)
- ½ cup of light cream (depends on your liking)
- Parmesan cheese or cheddar cheese
- Cook both ground beef and pork, and set aside.
- Using a large skillet, pour olive oil to heat. Add onions until soft then the garlic until light brown.
- Add mushrooms until tender and stir-in fresh basil leaves.
- Stir in fresh tomatoes until extra soft or it becomes watery then add cooked ground pork and beef. Simmer for 15 minutes.
- Pour in tomato sauce and bring to a simmer. Add the light cream if you want your sauce to be on the thicker side, let it simmer for additional 10-15 more minutes. Sprinkle salt and pepper to taste.
- Cook homemade pasta for 3-5 minutes then sprinkle with dried basil leaves. For stronger taste
- Pour sauce over pasta then serve with grated parmesan or cheddar cheese.
- Serve with a glass of red wine.