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Programma Pasta 

Carissimi amici,

Have you ever made pasta from scratch? It's been described as a labor of love, but with only 3 ingredients, at least it won’t send you on a day’s worth of grocery shopping. A few days ago, I made fresh egg pasta for the first time outside of Italy. I didn’t realize how much I relied on my friends’ expertise until many uncertainties popped up while following this seemingly simple recipe.

I skimmed through several recipes both in Italian and English and found that nearly all of them included a tactile component in the procedure: dough will be sticky and “shaggy”, knead until smooth, make sure dough isn’t too wet or dry, roll out until silky sheets are achieved.

Even long before the pandemic distanced us from in-person activities, I felt that we are losing our connection with our sense of touch as our fingertips are on touchscreens and keyboards more than ever. Making pasta by hand is a great way to feel and understand food through touch and inspired my iniziative “Programma Pasta”. I will be making pasta by hand, at least once per month until it comes out perfect, as in just like an Italian nonna’s. I’m inviting you to join me on the pasta making journey! We can share recipes as it seems that each one is slightly different from the other (i.e. flour measurements, how many egg whites or yolks, adding water to adjust dough texture) and share successes, flops, pictures, ideas, opinions and hopefully one day, eat pasta together.

Here’s my experience making salmon ravioli, using this recipe:


Tasted good

Pasta dough formed and cooked properly

Salmon filling stayed put and no raviolis broke open

Used semolina flour to keep raviolis from sticking together before boiling

Acceptable, not perfection:

Each ravioli was its own unique shape, I had to “tailor” each one. (mostly came out hexagonal or pentagonal)

Sometimes dough rolled out smoothly, other times came out cracked or in useless little pieces.

Added too much water because I thought the dough was too dry

What I’ll try next time:

Go out of my way to get Typo 00 flour (Whole Foods has it)

Let the dough rest longer, I’ve been told that the flour needs to “saturate” and will not need more water

I’m excited to perfect pasta making, a batch of homemade pasta (and perhaps some accompanying homemade sauce) would be a wonderful gift for a holiday, birthday, or any life event!

Reply to this email or write to to join the Programma Pasta adventure!

Who else loves pasta? Forward this newsletter to your fellow lovers of Italy, wine, pizza, gelato, art, music, history, culture, travel, pasta, cheese, beaches, mountains and general good times.

Italy is waiting for you! Spring classes are forming for beginner, intermediate and advanced level language classes. Chime in for online group or private lessons so you can be prepared for your big return to Italia.

Un abbraccio,



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