I love freshly made pasta, they taste so much better than the dried ones. So when I saw pasta being made in this shop in Bologna and had to stop and watch.
When I arrived, there were already a small group of spectators by the shop window. The girl, in fact I'm going to call her PM for pasta maker as I think she deserves a name, had just finished adding her first tray of eggs into the flour, and was starting on the second tray. That's 50 eggs in total!
示範的女生，就叫她做 PM (pasta maker)吧，因為我覺得她很勵害，應該有個名字。我到達店時，她剛加完第一盤雞蛋到麵粉裡，正開始加第二盤。這一共有 50隻!
Here's the pool of eggs in the flour bath. I loved how the dark yellow yolks were floating inside.
Slowly, PM gathered the flour from the inside of the bath, stirring gently with her hands.
Then she would flick the flour from the outside into the bath, covering the entire surface with a thin layer of flour. If I didn't tell you, you wouldn't know what's underneath.
The mixing is getting a bit more vigorous as the egg and flour start to mix together. PM starts to use a fork.
Finally, the dough is starting to come together, PM can break the flour wall and the egg doesn't leak out.
Now is when the hard work starts. PM is quite petite, probably about the same size as me, but her strength is quite incredible. Despite that, I can tell its still very hard work to knead such a big dough. I later found out it weighs 18kg!!!
Then she cuts it into two pieces so it's easier for her to knead it properly. Here's one half, you can see the centre needs a bit more work.
After a while, it seems the dough is ready, and she starts to cut it into smaller ball.
Each one is weighed, and it's about 1.5kg. She ends up with 12 balls that's how I know the entire dough weighs 18kg.
And lastly, each little dough needs to be knead again before it is finally wrapped in cling film and rested. In this last stage, I even get a smile from PM for one of my photos.
The final end products, are these lovely tortellini and tagliatelle.
This while process took about half an hour and I will always look at hand made pasta with a greater level of appreciation now. Knowing and seeing how your food is made makes it that more special.