I really want to try your Kuldunai recipe, but I find the dough making part to be a bit intimidating, especially since I usually have a melt down when I make pie crust because it is hard for me to make and not have stick to the well floured surface I roll it out on. Any other tips not in your blog you could give me to help me make this successfully? Also, how long does it take you to make it?
First off, try searching the internet for videos of people making pasta by hand. I watched several videos so I understood the technique, what the dough would look like, etc, and it helped.
The pasta dough recipe for the kuldunai is VERY, VERY forgiving. I just take a huge bowl, but the 3 cups of flour in it, and make a well. Then I whisk all the other ingredients together in a measuring cup, and pour it in the middle of the well. Then, I take a fork, and start gradually turning flour into the liquid mixture. It’ll get to a point where it sticks to your fork — I then clean the fork off and use my fingers. If it sticks to your fingers, it doesn’t have enough flour incorporated yet, and you can use your fingers to continue to mix/fold more flour into the sticky dough. If it doesn’t stick to your fingers, it has absorbed as much flour as it will, and you’re good to go on the kneading part. I sprinke some of the leftover flour from my bowl (I always have some) on the counter, and then lay my dough ball down. I start closest to me and use the tips of my fingers to push into the dough, making lines of finger marks away from my body, then I fold it over in half and do it again and again. I only knead mine by hand for about 3-4 minutes, because I’m impatient, and you can’t tell any difference. I then form the dough into a ball with my hands (doesn’t have to be perfect) and wrap it tightly in saran wrap. I put it in the fridge for 10-20 minutes to chill – I find it easier to roll out that way. When I’m ready to roll it out, I put the dough ball in the middle of my flour-y countertop(I use more than I think I need so it doesn’t stick) and sprinkle the top of the ball with flour. I also rub flour over the length of my rolling pin (I use a wooden one). Then I gently start rolling it out with my rolling pin. Also, don’t be afraid to periodically stop rolling and gently pick the dough up. It won’t be as fragile as pie crust, and that way you can ensure it isn’t sticking to your surface.
I don’t know if that helps or not! LOL If you’re scared, just try making the dough a couple of times. It’s really delicious and you could easily just roll it out, slice it into strips with a knife, boil it and put pasta sauce over it and serve it as spaghetti. Maybe trying the dough alone a few times will make you feel more confident? It certainly works that way for me! 🙂
A few more notes about the kuldunai…
- The meat mixture will fill approximately two batches of the dough. I don’t know if I’m superstitious about pasta dough or what, but I always make my pasta dough batches individually, rather than doubling the recipe.
- You’ll also probably have a little bit of meat mixture left after two batches of dough. I highly reccommend making them into hamburger patties and frying them up. There’s nothing more delicious than an onion-studded burger!
- Working alone, from start of the dough and meat to the end result being put in the freezer, this process takes me 2 hours – 2 hours 15 minutes.
- I normally wrangle my husband into helping me – he rolls the dough out and cuts the circles and I fill the circles and fold them closed. This way only takes about an hour.
- I normally make the meat mixture a few hours before I plan on making the kulundai, and store it in the fridge. I find it gives more of an onion flavor to the meat, as well as softens up the onions and makes them stick to the ground beef better when i go to place small scoops on the pasta.
Hope that helps!