A Noodle By Any Other Name

Noonles

It’s no secret that I love pasta.  (Understatement of the year…)

But prior to this, the only pasta I’d made from scratch was plain ol’ noodles.  (Insert happy memory here:  When my son was a wee babe, he called them “noonles.”)  Family food memories are a delight, aren’t they?

During my early noodle-making years, I seriously underestimated how large uncooked “noonles” can grow when they simmer (after cutting them in a hurry, I might add…)

The result was a hefty batch of noonles, which my kids promptly dubbed 2 by 4’s!  To this day, we refer to my homemade chicken noodle soup as “2 x 4 Soup.”

Homemade 2 x 4 Soup

But, this kitchen exploit involves grown-up pasta…

Laced with spinach, toothy, and as large (or small) as you care to cut it and tossed with freshly grated Parmesan and a drizzle of olive oil or, my favorite — butter, sea salt, & freshly ground pepper — Spinach Pasta is sure to bring out the kid in you.

The grown-up kid.

Homemade Spinach Pasta

(adapted from bell’alimento — thanks, Paula!)

6 oz. fresh spinach

1 small clove garlic, finely minced

Extra virgin olive oil (enough to lightly coat skillet)

Pinch of Kosher salt

Grind of black pepper

2 1/2 to 3 c. flour

3 eggs

Salt, to taste

In a large skillet, saute the spinach in olive oil until it begins to wilt.

Add garlic; stir until fragrant, about a minute.  Remove from heat; season with salt & pepper to taste.

Transfer spinach to a sieve; allow to drain.  Press out as much moisture as possible with the back of a spoon and place drained spinach in a food processor or blender; pulse until smooth.

In a large bowl, measure 2 1/2 cups flour.  Make a well in the center; add the eggs and a pinch of salt.  Mix with a wooden spoon — or your hands — it’s fun!

Add pureed spinach a little at a time until the dough comes together in a ball.  (I left mine a bit “sticky” to compensate for the flour used when rolling out “noonles” with a rolling pin.)  If you happen to be the proud owner of a pasta machine, please refer to your manufacturer’s instructions.

FYI… you may not use all of the spinach.  (If not, reserve the rest for another use.)  You also may (or may not) use the remaining flour.  It was humid the day I made this batch, so I used less spinach and the resulting “noonles” weren’t as green.

Also, I wish I could be more precise, but pasta-making isn’t an exact science!  Use your judgment and have fun with it.

Cover the dough with a clean towel; allow to rest 15 minutes.

Divide dough into fourths; roll out a portion at a time to your desired thickness.  (Sprinkle with flour as needed to keep from sticking.)

With a sharp knife or pasta machine, slice “noonles” into desired widths, bearing in mind that they swell when they cook. :)  Allow them to rest (covered) while you roll/cut the remaining dough.

Meanwhile, bring a large kettle of water to a boil; add salt to taste.

Throw in your desired portion; cook until al dente and serve immediately.  The remaining uncooked noodles may be dried on a rack (or your counter top if need be…) and frozen for later use.

On a roll

No matter what you call them, a noodle by any name is worth it.

I’m not kidding!

Enjoying grown-up “noonles,”

~ Kimby

14 thoughts on “A Noodle By Any Other Name

  1. Yum!

    My dad’s sister is too ill to cook anymore, but she was amazing in the kitchen. I loved her homemade bread and noodles and it was such a delight to watch her make magic. This post brought back so many wonderful memories.

    • Shary, I loved your phrase “it was such a delight to watch her make magic.” Your Aunt sounded like she made wonderful food and memories! Thanks for sharing that. xo

    • Hi, Nancy! Pasta in any way, shape, or form (or FLAVOR) makes me weak in the knees, too. :) I hope you’ll give it a go! Thanks for stopping in here at the lake to visit!

  2. These look delicious! I have to avoid noodles in general, but these sound so yummy. One of my friends made spinach lasagna noodles the other day and I thought that sounded delicious for a nice veggie lasagna.

    • Elizabeth, my sister made the most wonderful vegetarian pasta dish when I visited her and I hope to share that recipe in an upcoming post! I’m considering using a gluten-free pasta (not sure if I can make it “homemade” or not?) — need to “research” that! Thanks for the idea of spinach lasagna noodles, too — I seem to have a propensity for large noodles, lol!

  3. Dear Kimby,

    Pasta is one of my favourites too. It’s a bonus that I love cooking with it too because many Italian pasta recipes are such wholesome, comfort dishes that can be had all year round.

  4. I’m a pasta freak, yet I’ve not tried making any. With so many fanciful Italian restaurants in S’pore, I guess I’m not motivated to make my own. Spinach pasta is certainly one of my favourites……

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