Honestly, I never really celebrate St Patricks Day. I don’t even know how often we Aussies celebrate it overall. However, I will do my best at showing it some love in this post. Today, we are making green pasta, and in case you haven’t noticed, this is a fresh pasta recipe. What makes it green you ask? Don’t worry, it isn’t anything artificial, it’s spinach!! Many people call this spinach pasta or pasta Verde. And the great thing about spinach is that its light. So it doesn’t really affect the flavour of the pasta dough. And I suppose incorporating spinach in the dough would be quite a good way of balancing out the carbs a bit? Or am I completely wrong about that?
Beware one thing though, and I know I mention this in my recipes all the time but I can never stress it enough. Remember, spinach is like 0.01% leaf and 99.99% water. Ok, maybe a bit of an exaggeration but you must get rid of that water. Some people have actually disagreed with me on this subject with some other recipes of mine. However, I know for certain it is crucial in this recipe. Otherwise, there will be too much water content in the dough and you’ll most likely end up with a sticky mess.
Making fresh pasta is super fun, especially when you make it with a pasta machine. If you don’t have a pasta machine, don’t worry, you can just roll your pasta dough out nice and thin with a rolling pin (ooo that rhymed), then roll the thin dough up and cut it into fettucini with your knife. Your pasta won’t be as consistent in terms of its size and thickness, but it does the job well.
By the way, how is St Patrick’s Day celebrated in your neck of the woods? Do any of you party, wear green clothes or drink green jello shots? Or, would you make a green dish such as this one? As I said, I never considered doing anything for St Patties Day, but as I write this post, I get more curious about it. This green pasta recipe also makes me want to try black pasta/squid ink pasta. Perhaps that will be the next pasta dish on this blog. Pack it with seafood and marinara sauce. Who knows!!
Really hope you guys enjoy this recipe and if you haven’t subscribed to this blog yet, feel free to do so. Try to remember that this recipe is about having a bit of fun in the kitchen rather than making a quick dinner. As there is a process to making fresh pasta. And if you have kids, get them involved!! Tell them that you are making ogre pasta. As always thanks so much for reading this post. You may or may not have noticed, but I made some adjustments to this site to speed it up. So if this blog was ever irritating you because of its slow loading speed, I apologise. I am always trying to improve this blog in any way I can. Not sure what recipe I am going to prepare for Easter yet, so if you have any suggestions, let me know.
St Patrick’s Day Cheesy Sausage Green Pasta
- Green Pasta:
- - 200g of spinach
- - 340g of flour 00 flour is better
- - 3 eggs
- - A pinch of salt
- - A handful of ice
- Cheesy Sauce:
- - 40g of butter
- - 30g of flour
- - 3 cups of milk
- - 160g cheddar cheese
- - Salt and pepper for seasoning
- - 750g pork sausages
- - Olive oil
- - Salt and pepper for seasoning
- - A handful of parsley chopped
- - A handful of basil chopped
- Pasta dough:
- - Bring a pot of water to a boil. Put your ice in a large bowl, then fill with cold water. Add your spinach to the boiling water and steep for about half a minute. Transfer the spinach to the ice-cold water. Lay out some kitchen paper, squeeze as much liquid out of the spinach as possible, then drain on the kitchen paper.
- - Get a food processor with the blade attachment ready. Add your blanched spinach, then crack in your eggs. Blitz for 1-2 minutes until well combined.
- - Put your flour and a pinch of salt in a large bowl, then make a well in the middle with your hands. And the spinach and egg to the well. Slowly incorporate the flour in the green mixture as you stir it through. Once the mixture starts to come together, pour out your rough dough on a flat surface.
- - Firmly bring the dough together then knead for 5-10 minutes. Whenever the dough starts getting sticky, add a dusting of flour. You want to end up with a smooth, pliable dough. Cut the dough into quarters, then wrap each quarter in cling film and rest in the fridge for about 20 minutes.
- - Set up a pasta machine, with plenty of flour for dusting. Get one of your quarters of pasta dough out of the fridge. Unwrap the dough, dust with flour, then dust the rollers in the machine. Roll the dough through the thickest setting of the pasta machine a couple of times, then dust the dough and the rollers again. Roll the dough through the second thickest setting a couple of times. Repeat this cycle until your pasta dough is thin but not too thin. So my pasta roller's thickest setting is 1 and the thinnest is 9. I stopped rolling my dough at about 5-6. Make sure you keep dusting with flour so nothing sticks and when the dough gets too long to handle, cut it in half.
- - Once you have finished the first quarter of your dough, move on to the next one, and keep going until all of the dough is rolled out.
- - Once all of your dough is rolled, cut them so they are about the length of a ruler. You can then either cut the pasta into fettuccine by rolling it through the pasta cutter attachment on the pasta machine, or you can just roll the pasta up on a board, then cut the pasta into long strips with your knife.
- - Dust all of your fresh fettuccine pasta with plenty of flour so that none of it sticks together.
- Cheesy sauce:
- - Get a large frying pan on medium heat, then add your butter. Once the butter has melted, add your flour and stir through until you get a paste. Cook the paste for a minute to cook out the flour.
- - From there, turn the heat down nice and low, then add your milk about 1/2 a cup at a time stirring through till nice and smooth on each occasion (if it looks really really lumpy and like it won't go smooth, don't worry, keep stirring and it will).
- - Once all of the milk is incorporated, bring the sauce up to a boil, the down to a gentle simmer. Let the sauce bubble away for a few minutes.
- - Next, add your cheese and stir through until melted. Turn the heat off, then season to taste with salt and pepper. If you ever feel like the sauce is too thick, you can add a splash of milk.
- - Drizzle your sausages with just enough olive oil to coat them, season with salt and pepper then rub the seasoning and oil all over.
- - Pre-heat a griddle pan on high heat. Once the pan is nice a hot, add your sausages, turning them every couple of minutes. Cook for about 11-15 minutes depending on how thick the sausages are. Once they are cooked, turn the heat off, transfer the sausages to a board and cut them into thick slices.
- - Get 5 litres of water in a pot with 2 teaspoons of salt.
- - Bring the water to a boil. Once boiling, get your pasta ready and start re-heat your cheese sauce. Pick up your pasta, shake off some the excess flour and then add to the water. Once all of the pasta is added cook for about 1½ minutes.
- - Use a pair of tongs to transfer the pasta to your sauce (do not discard the pasta water). Stir the pasta through the sauce, then add your sausages, your chopped parsley and your chopped basil. If you feel that you need to loosen the pasta slightly, ladle in a bit of the starchy pasta water.
- - Once you have finished the dish, serve straight away.
- Once fresh pasta is cooked, it can stick together when it's left alone for too long, so try to serve it as soon as you finish the dish.
- Don't be shy with the flour, have plenty for dusting.