Making fresh pasta is like alchemy. But it’s a very democratic type of alchemy that anyone can be a part of. When you tell someone that you made your own pasta they will look at you like you’re a wizard, and only you will know how easy it was. —Sarah Coates
Place the flour onto a clean surface and spread it out in a circle, making a well in the middle.
Crack the eggs directly into the well in the flour, and sprinkle the salt over top. Adding the salt to the eggs at this stage ensures that it dissolves and gets distributed evenly.
Using a fork, start gently whisking the eggs just to break them up. Once the eggs are mostly beaten, start carefully incorporating the flour from the walls of your well. Go slowly, and try not to break your flour dam, but it's not the end of the world if you do.
Slowly keep combining the egg and flour until you have a thick paste. Now's the time to roll up your sleeves and do the final bit of flour incorporation and kneading.
With your hands, scoop any remaining flour into the eggs and begin kneading the pasta dough. You can knead vigorously for a solid five minutes, or more relaxedly for 10 -- just keep going until all the flour is incorporated and the dough feels elastic and smooth.
Once the dough is kneaded, wrap it in plastic and place it in the fridge to rest for at least half an hour (or overnight).
Divide the dough into four, and flatten each piece into an oval shape. Flour the dough well, and begin passing it through the widest setting of your pasta machine. After a few goes through on the widest setting, fold the pasta back onto itself, and roll it through again. Do this several times on the widest setting. Laminating the dough in this way ensures that your pasta will have good texture and bite.
Once the dough is laminated, you can keep reducing the width setting on your pasta machine until the dough is the thickness you like, remembering to flour the pasta and the machine if anything is sticking.
Once the sheets are to your preferred thickness, the pasta can be used straight away for ravioli, cannelloni, or lasagna, or you can leave the sheets to dry for a few hours before cutting them into noodles, such as the pappardelle pictured here.
Sarah is the author and photographer behind The Sugar Hit, a blog solely devoted to the joys of eating. She is a typical 21st century creative type, totally obsessed with food, writing, design, photography and styling. She lives in Brisbane, Australia and regularly eats mountains of crudités in a misguided attempt to offset the staggering amounts of butter she consumes daily.