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Red Fife Paccheri with Kale Sauce

For the dough...

To give the paccheri as much structure as possible, I used 50/50 Red Fife and 00 flours, totaling 300 grams (Red Fife has a higher protein content), along with 3 whole eggs and some water for additional hydration, as needed. Knead vigorously for 10-15 minutes and let the dough rest, tightly wrapped.


For the sauce...

This is inspired by Joshua McFadden's kale sauce recipe from his book "Six Seasons: A New Way with Vegetables" and is essentially the same, except I used what I had on hand. Roughly chop 1 bunch baby broccoli, then blanch the pieces with 1/2 lb frozen mixed greens (I used collards, kale, and mustard greens) in lightly salted water for approximately 1 minute. Drain and immediately run under cold water to stop the cooking. Smash 3 garlic cloves and toast whole in olive oil over medium-high heat until browned and fragrant, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and its oil, the blanched greens, and additional extra-virgin olive oil (approximately 1/4 cup) to a blender and puree until very smooth. You may need to add water to get the blender moving. Season to taste with salt and pepper and blend again. Set aside.


Time to shape...

1. Roll about 1/4 of the dough into a thick sheet (setting 3 on my Marcato hand roller).

2. Cut 3” x 1.5” rectangles out of the dough with a knife or pastry cutter. Be as precise as possible!

3. Brush the ends of the rectangle with a small amount of water. Bring the edges together, overlapping slightly, and press firmly to seal into a tube.

4. Continue pressing the seal so it’s less visible and the same thickness as the rest of the tube. Place onto a plate or baking sheet with semolina and repeat! (Note: it's helpful to let the paccheri dry for at least 20 minutes before cooking so they hold their shape better, and up to several hours).

Finishing touches...

Cook the pasta in well-salted water until al dente—this may take several minutes, depending on how dry they are. While the pasta cooks, add most of the kale sauce to a pan over medium heat (you may have leftovers for another use). As the sauce heats, add approximately 1/4 cup finely grated Parmesan and stir to combine so the cheese melts. Then add a few large spoonfuls of pasta water—incrementally—so the puree becomes saucy and smooth. Add the cooked pasta to the sauce and toss to coat. Serve topped with additional Parmesan. Bon appetit!


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