How to Make Homemade Pasta With Kids
When it comes to cooking, messes come with the territory. So it's really no wonder why kids have fun helping out in the kitchen and experimenting with new recipes. But if you've yet to try making your own noodles as a family, you're missing out on one big mess of a good time.
"Fingers are covered with gluey, pasty dough before it magically comes together," says Dana Bowen, who, along with business partner Sara Kate Gillingham, founded The Dynamite Shop on a mission to not only teach kids how to cook, but to empower them to express themselves through the lens of food. "We teach kids that mistakes happen but that it's all part of the process."
Want to host your own messy kid cooking night? Here's their recipe for fresh pasta, plus a few clean up tips for after.
The Dynamite Shop's Fresh Pasta Recipe
Makes 4 servings (about 1 lb.)
- 2 cups all-purpose flour (or gluten-free flour), plus more for dusting work surface
- 4 large eggs
- Mound flour into a pile on a clean surface. Use your fingers to make a deep well in the center of the flour. Crack one of the eggs into the well and, using a fork, gently whisk the egg, pulling in bits of flour as you go. Once there is room in the well, add the second egg and continue to whisk and gradually pull in more flour. Repeat with the remaining eggs.
- Once it becomes difficult to mix with the fork, use your hands to knead the dough, pushing and pressing, until the mixture forms a ball and is no longer sticky. Wrap dough tightly with plastic wrap and let it rest at room temperature for 20-30 minutes.
- Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil on high. (If it comes to a boil before you are ready to cook the noodles, turn off the heat.)
- Meanwhile, unwrap dough and cut into four equal portions. Place one portion on a floured work surface and re-wrap the remaining portions. Using a rolling pin, make a long sheet of pasta, ideally 8-in. wide x 18-in. long and a millimeter thick (you should almost be able to see through it, but not quite.)
- From the short end, roll the rectangular dough into a log, adding flour as needed to prevent the sides of the sheets from sticking together. Slice into desired noodle widths. Transfer the noodles to a floured work surface until ready to cook. Repeat with the remaining portions of dough.
- Cook noodles until they float to the top, 2 to 3 minutes. Drain and toss with your favorite pasta sauce. Serve immediately.
Pasta Cleanup Tips
If you're doing this project in the kitchen, a rubber dough scraper, about $3, will remove gooey flour from countertops easily, Gillingham says. "We're also big proponents of the side towel—just a dish towel tucked into apron strings," which encourages kids to wipe hands and spills as they go.
© 2021 Dynamite Media LLC. These recipes and associated text are provided for you as a supplement to The Dynamite Shop Classes and are not licensed to you for further distribution.
This article originally appeared in Parents magazine's June 2021 issue as "The Wild, Wild Mess." Want more from the magazine? Sign up for a monthly print subscription here