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Nettle Pasta

25 October World Pasta Day

Pasta is one of the world’s most favorite foods! We celebrate World Pasta Day today. The goal of this day is to call attention not just to the product of pasta, but to new, healthy, and creative ways to enjoy a pasta meal. 

The world has enjoyed this dish since the first century A.D. Pasta are divided into two main categories: dried (pasta secca) and fresh (pasta fresca). Most dried pasta is produced commercially by machines and fresh pasta is traditionally produced by hand.

Dried pasta surged in popularity during the 14th and 15th centuries — mainly for its easy storage. This allowed people to bring pasta along on ships when exploring the New World. One of the first pasta factories of Europe was established in Pest, Hungary in 1859, which worked with steam machines.

Fresh stinging nettle is one of our most nutritious wild foods and makes a great cooked green, and it’s also a perfect addition to fresh hand-made pasta. Since it keeps its bright green color after cooking, it makes a beautiful and healthful pasta.

Let’s celebrate World Pasta Day with this home-made nettle pasta!

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups of fresh nettle leaves or 1 cup of nettle leaf powder
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 and a half cup all-purpose flour
  • A pinch of sea salt

Preparation:

  1. If you use freshly picked nettle, blanch them for 3 minutes, rinse in cold water and squeeze out as much liquid as possible.
  2. Puree egg and nettle (blanched or powder) to a smooth consistency. 
  3. Add flour and salt and mix to combine. It shouldn’t be sticky but should hold together when pinched. Knowing when the consistency is right is something that takes practice.
  4. Gather into a ball, turn out onto a floured surface and knead for a few minutes until smooth and elastic.
  5. Wrap in plastic wrap and let rest for half an hour in the fridge. Roll out and cut whatever pasta shape you prefer. You can do it with a pasta machine or a sharp chef’s knife.
  6. When ready to use, boil in salted water for 2 to 3 minutes or until al dente. Toss with olive oil or butter to prevent sticking.
  7. Add your favourite pasta sauce. Green herbs, garlic and spices work well with olive oil and cheese to nettle pasta.

Enjoy!

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