If there's one thing I could eat for the rest of my life, it would probably be a simple bowl of pappardelle pasta tossed in butter, pepper, and a little bit of the starchy-salty water it's been cooking in (plus a small mountain of Parmigiano Reggiano). You see, I eat pasta at least two or three times a week, every which way: spaghetti á la Marcella Hazan, gnocchi in a lemony kale pesto, fettuccine with this creamy mushroom situation, and so many more.
It is my favorite food. I love it, and it loves me. One could even say I am a pasta-ficionado.
Which means I am very discerning when it comes to the stuff, especially fresh pasta. I've always been a fan of the classic version with just flour and eggs, and frankly, a little skeptical of any variations on that formula.
So when I discovered that the entire menu—including the fresh pastas—at New York City restaurant, Santina, was entirely gluten-free, I was surprised to find that I could hardly taste the difference. In fact, between the handful of pastas I ordered, I couldn't taste the difference at all.
What was the secret to these delicate, toothsome noodles? I talked to Santina's executive chef, Ashley Eddie (who started as a line cook at the restaurant in 2015 before working her way up to the kitchen's top spot in 2018) to find out.
Eddie's most important tip: When it comes to gluten-free anything, practice makes perfect. "Our house-made recipes are practiced and perfected over time and are some of our biggest sellers." Which is to say, this pasta recipe took more than a few tries to nail down. Her other key piece of advice: "Have patience. Making pasta is a delicate process in general and even more so if it's gluten-free."
Keep these in mind the next time you try making her gluten-free fresh pasta recipe, which she's shared below, and if you happen to swing by Santina the next time you're in N.Y.C.'s Meatpacking District, take my recommendation: Order the spicy lobster fettuccine; it's my favorite.
In a bowl, whisk together the tapioca starch, rice flour, and glutinous rice flour until well combined.
Make a well in the center of the flour and add the egg yolks. Using a fork, whisk together the egg yolks until just combined and slowly mix the flour into the egg until a dough forms.
Cut the dough into four equal-size pieces. Dust the counter with rice flour and, working with one piece of dough at a time, knead for a few minutes until smooth. When you're not kneading the other pieces of dough, wrap them in cling film to prevent them from drying out.
Roll out the dough using a pasta roller or rolling pin as soon as possible (you can also use the rice flour for dusting here too), as the dough should not sit for long.
Note: This recipe works best on shaped stuffed pasta, like tortellini, or wide flat pasta, like pappardelle; it's delicate, so it won't hold a spaghetti shape very well. Once the pasta has been rolled out and cut into your desired shape, bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Once boiling, add the pasta and cook until tender, about 3 to 5 minutes (taste test a noodle or two as the pasta cooks to make sure it's just how you like it).
This recipe has been scaled down from restaurant proportions; feel free to scale it down further at home.
What's your all-time favorite pasta recipe? Tell us in the comments below!
Erin Alexander is the Assistant Editor of Partner Content at Food52, covering pop culture, travel, foods of the internet, and all things #sponsored. Formerly at Men’s Journal, Men’s Fitness, Us Weekly, and Hearst, she currently lives in New York City.