Fazzoletti Herb Pasta
Does your herb garden runneth over? Here is a sublime way to capture the end of summer on a plate. Fazzoletti, which in Italian loosely translates to “handkerchief,” is a type of super thin pasta rolled with herbs and popular throughout the Mediterranean- each country having their own herbal profile and serving style. This is a beautiful, artistic, and creative type of pasta, which allows for endless combinations of herbs and flavor profiles. It works best with homemade pasta dough. It is such a beautiful dish, you will almost not want to eat it… almost! The following is Shawnie’s original recipe.
A variety of leafy herbs or edible flowers, pulled apart. (Avoid shrubby herbs with thick stems)
For the Pasta Dough
- 2 c flour
- 3 large eggs
- 2 tbs olive oil, extra virgin or flavored
- ¼ c water for extra moisture if dough is dry and crumbly
For the Sauce
- 2 tbs olive oil, EVOO
- 1 shallot, chopped
- 1 clove of garlic, chopped
- ¼ c dry white wine
For the garnish
- Parsely, chopped
- Grated Parmesan cheese
Thoroughly clean counters intended for making the dough
Make the pasta dough: create a mound with the flour, hollow out a well in the center.
Crack the three eggs into a separate bowl or ramekin then pour into the well
Add two tablespoons of olive oil and blend by hand until firm dough develops.
Add a few drops of water at a time if dough is still dry. However, it should be somewhat stiff dough.
Roll dough into ball and wrap with cling wrap. Refrigerate for a few hours. At minimum one hour
Clean & prepare your herbs. This required about 2 cups of chopped herbs and green.
I used: parsley, watercress, and dill. Be as creative as you want with the combination of greens. Don’t be afraid to mix in lettuce varieties. They add succulent flavor and beautiful texture.
Remove dough from the refrigerator and split the large dough ball into four smaller discs.
Using pasta roller, roll out each disc until it’s very thin. I turn the knob all the way to 6 to create a nearly translucent panel of pasta.
Cut the super long sheet in equal halves for more manageable working.
Now for the fun part! Decorate one half of the sheet with herbs. Feel free to add garlic powder, dried herbs, salt & pepper at this point. The sky is the limit with creativity.
Lay the other half of the pasta sheet on top, in essence making a giant pasta sandwich. Press them together gently as not to mess up your herb art.
Use a rolling pin to get the two sheets to stick together to pass through roller again.
Roll each sandwiched sheet through settings 4 and 5 again. It should stretch and distort the herbs into beautiful patterns, reminiscent of a handkerchief. The patterns remind me of fern fossils, so I nicknamed this recipe “Fossil pasta.”
Cut the pasta sheets in whatever shape you prefer. Ribbons if you have long rows of herbs, or square-ish shapes to keep the integrity of the “image.” Again, this step can be as creative as you want. Spread out to dry.
Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a slow boil
Make a quick, simple sauce: heat olive oil in a small frying pan and sauté the chopped shallots for a few minutes, before adding the garlic for another 2 minutes. Add white wine and let simmer while making the pasta.
Cook the pasta: drop the pasta piece by piece into the water. Don’t boil too hard or have it too crowded.
Let cook 5-6 minutes and fish them out with a pasta fork or slotted spoon. They stay in tack quite nicely.
Arrange pasta artistically on a place, served with a simple drizzle of garlic and shallot sauce; garnish with a sprinkle of parsley and grated Parmesan.