Noodles can turn a plain soup into a filling meal. This recipe will make plenty of noodles for a large pot of homemade soup. Double the recipe and you will have enough noodles to add to a Dutch oven full of stew or to add to a chicken or tuna casserole.
The recipe was created years ago after I read and tested almost every noodle recipe I found in old cookbooks. It is the only one I use now. Using half an eggshell to measure the milk in is a tip I found in a Julia Child article about quiche. Milk makes the noodles tender. The dash of nutmeg is traditional in German noodles and can easily be omitted.
The origin of noodles goes back to around 4000 BP China. From there the art spread around the globe. Each culture has their favorite version and ingredients. From simple strips of dough to filled noodles the variety of recipes can be an adventure.
Half recipe for soup;
- 1 cup of all purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon of salt
- Dash of nutmeg
- 1 egg
- 1 half of an eggshell of milk
- 1 ½ teaspoon of cooking oil
Full recipe for casseroles
- 2 cups of all purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon of salt
- Dash of nutmeg
- 2 eggs
- 2 half eggshells of milk
- 1 tablespoon of cooking oil
Mix the flour, salt and nutmeg in a large bowl or on a clean counter top. Make a well in the center and break the egg(s) into it. Add the milk and cooking oil. Using a fork or your fingers (remove your rings!) begin working the liquids together and then begin pulling the flour into the liquid. Mix until the dough comes together in a ball around the fork or your hand.
Flour a clean flat surface and turn the dough out on it. Knead the dough until it is smooth and elastic. Roll into a ball and allow the dough to rest about 30 minutes under a bowl or wrap with plastic. You can wrap the dough well and put in the refrigerator for use the next day.
After the dough has rested divide it into workable pieces. I usually divide it into fourths. Roll the dough out as thin as you can on a floured surface. Turn the dough over and keep both sides floured during rolling it out. Roll into sheets that are longer than they are wide.
Allow the sheets of dough to sit a while until they feel like fine glove leather to the touch. Roll each sheet up jelly roll fashion and cut into thin ¼ inch slices with a sharp knife.
Separate the rolls of noodles and toss them in flour on a large sheet pan. Let them sit until you are ready to use them. Or hang them on a drying rack or from clean coat hangers from cabinet knobs.
At this point you can pop the pan of noodles into the freezer and when they are frozen put them into plastic bags. Frozen noodles will cook in simmering soup or stew without thawing first.
Fresh noodles take less time to cook than commercial ones. Cook fresh noodles in plenty of boiling salted water or add directly to a simmering soup or stew.
The recipe can be used for almost any shape of pasta including filled.
A pizza cutter works well to cut noodles if you want square noodles for soups or filled noodles.
Make your own lasagna noodles by measuring the pan you will use and making the noodles as long and a bit over half as wide. There will be no fancy edge but they work as well as commercial noodles. Cook one at a time in boiling salted water to keep them from sticking together.
Herbs and garlic or onion juice can be added to the noodle dough.
Small amounts of vegetable purees can be mixed into the dough for colored noodles, tomato for reddish, spinach for green. Colored noodles are often used for salads.
Fresh noodles can be fried. After cooking the noodles in boiling water drain well before frying in an inch or so of hot cooking oil. After removing from the oil sprinkle the noodles with seasoned salt and serve for snacks.
An easy filling for noodles is a combination of ground meat, onion and potato fried until browned. Stir in cheese and an egg and a tablespoon or so of flour to bind the mixture. Cut the dough into 2 inch squares and put a teaspoon or so of filling on each, fold in the edges and crimp before cooking in boiling salted water. After cooking you can also toast them by frying in melted butter in a frying pan. Serve with a sour cream, cheese sauce or leftover gravy. If you use Italian sausage and seasonings these become ravioli and can be served covered with tomato sauce.
Cut the noodles ¼ inch wide for soups, ½ inch wide for casseroles and stews. But there is no set rule.