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Christmas Pinwheel Pasta

Christmas Pinwheel Pasta

Author of "Pasta, Pretty Please," Linda Miller Nicholson is making a pasta dish that is delicious and beautiful!
Ingredients for Leafy Greens Dough (Dark Green)
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ bunch of lacinato kale or other dark leafy green such as spinach (4 to 6 ounces, or about 2 packed cups baby spinach) or nettles.
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2-¼ cups “00” pasta flour
Ingredients for Milk Dough (White)
  • 2-¼ cups “00” pasta flour, or more as needed
  • ½ cup whole milk, or more as needed
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
Ingredients for Bacon-Peanut-Tomato Sauce
  • 12 ounces bacon, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
  • 1 leek, trimmed and rinsed carefully, white part sliced into 1/8-inch rings
  • 1 pound grape tomatoes
  • 2/3 cup roasted, salted peanuts, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ cup dry or amontillado sherry
  • ¾ cup hot, starchy pasta water
  • 2 loosely packed cups pea sprouts or other tender greens

Directions for Leafy Green Dough

1. In a large saucepan over high heat, bring the salt, baking soda, 8 cups water to a boil. Add the kale and blanch it for 15 seconds. Strain and press out the water.

2. Add the kale to a blender and wait 1 or 2 minutes for it to cool. Add the eggs and blend on low speed at first to combine, then increase the speed and puree until smooth.

3. Strain the puree with a fine-mesh sieve over a small bowl to remove and discard any grainy threads. This should yield about 1 cup puree.

4. In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine the flour and puree. Mix on low speed until a ball of dough forms. Continue to knead for 3 minutes, either by hand or in the mixer, so that the dough develops elasticity and silkiness. Cover the ball of dough in plastic wrap and let it rest at room temperature for 30 minutes before sheeting.

5. Alternatively, you can let the dough rest for up to 24 hours in the refrigerator. The color sometimes intensified after that, although the dough is still usable for up to 3 days.

Directions for Milk Dough

1. Combine the flour, milk, and cream in the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and mix on low speed until the dough starts to come together. If it’s a touch on the dry side, add a tablespoon or two more milk, and it it’s too sticky, a bit more flour will firm it up. Continue to knead for 3 minutes, either by hand or in the mixer, so that the dough develops elasticity and silkiness. Cover the ball of dough in plastic wrap and let it rest at room temperature for 30 minutes before sheeting.

2. Alternatively, you can let the dough rest for up to 24 hours in the refrigerator. The color sometimes yellows after that, although the dough is still usable for up to 3 days.

Directions for the Sauce

1. Fry the bacon in a large saucepan over medium-high heat until the edges begin to crisp, about 5 minutes. Pour off all but 2 tablespoons of the bacon fat.

2. Stir in the leek and sauté for 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes, peanuts, thyme, salt and pepper and stir to combine. Cook for 2 minutes, then add the sherry and scrape any bits off the bottom of the pan. When the sherry has nearly evaporated, about 2 minutes, add the pasta water and bring to a blustering boil for 1 minute.

3. Remove from the heat. Carefully add pasta and gently toss. Serve immediately, topping each portion with a handful of pea sprouts.

Directions for Striped Pasta Sheet

1. Sheet the white dough.
2. Sheet the green dough.
3. Cut green dough into strips.
4. Brush water on white dough and adhere green strips.
5. Press through pasta maker or hand roll.

Directions for Pasta Pinwheels

1. Cut pasta sheet into 2-inch squares (can make larger if desired)
2. Cut on the diagonal from each corner towards the center to create 8 flaps.
3. Pinch every other flap in towards the center and press down. If pasta is too dry, adhere to center with a small drop of water.

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