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Either put the flour (with the salt) in a bowl and crack the eggs into it, or make a mound of flour on a worktop and add the eggs to that. I don't bother to beat them before adding them to the flour, but if you prefer to, do. Just find the way that you prefer. All you do is mix the flour and eggs together, and then knead the mixture until it comes together in a satiny mass. Kneading involves no more than pushing the mixture away from you with the heels of your hands and then bringing it back toward you. If you've got an electric mixer with a dough hook, then use that, though for some reason I don't find it makes the pasta cohere any sooner. And you don't get the relaxing satisfaction of making it by hand.
When the pasta is silky smooth, form it into a ball, cover with a cloth and leave for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Then get out your pasta machine, read the instructions and away you go. Two tips first: cut each slice you want to feed through the pasta machine, read the instructions and away you go. Put through the no. 1 press quite a few times, folding the strip in 1/2 and pushing it through again after each time. When the pasta dough's been fed a few times through the no. 1 slot, pass it through the remaining numbers on the gauge before pushing it through the tagliatelle-cutters. And I find that pasta strips cut into tagliatelle is better if you leave them hanging over the table or wherever to dry a little first (10 minutes is enough).
When you cook the pasta, make sure you've got plenty of boiling, salted water and start tasting as soon as the water comes back to the boil after you've put the pasta in. Use about 1/3 of the Meatballs in their sauce to toss with the cooked, drained pasta and then pour the rest of them over the scantly sauced ribbons in the bowl. This is ambrosia: food to get you through the winter happily.
Yield: 6 servings
Yield: 6 servings