As many of you know, I am all about people exploring their unique interests and talents, especially in the kitchen. I like taking on new challenges each day because I consider myself a lifelong learner. I recently discovered CourseHorse, a company dedicated to helping people find and cultivate their talents and goals, was going to offer classes in the Nashville area. What I really like about CourseHorse is the variety it offers. From cooking and painting to database certification, CourseHorse has everything you need to make your life more fulfilling. When I came across “Magnifico- Italian Kitchen, Make Your Own Pasta“, my heart skipped a few beats. I’ve always dreamt of traveling to Italy to learn how to make homemade pasta, but a homemade pasta cooking class in my own backyard?! I couldn’t resist. At the end of this post, you too will have a chance to win a $100 towards a Nashville CourseHorse class you can’t resist.
The Make Your Own Pasta class was held at Dabble Studio in Nashville, a locally owned family business specializing in the food and art scene. Upon arrival, we were greeted by the sweetest instructor named Jamie, a culinary trained foodie with a love for creativity in the kitchen. As everyone arrived, our dinner tables were set with an array of high-quality cheeses imported from Italy, my favorite being the Italian truffle cheese. While we enjoyed tasting and learning about the different cheeses, we were divided into groups of four and our cooking stations were set with our vegetables and other ingredients we would be cooking with for this culinary adventure.
Yes, I said vegetables. We were making Tagliatelle con Ragu Bolognese, a traditional Italian meal with carrots and celery complete with generous amounts of sage, thyme, parsley, and nutmeg to add some warmth to the dish.Before we were to get started, Jamie demonstrated proper slicing techniques to help save time in the kitchen. She also suggested using the stems and all when cooking with herbs in order to bring out the flavor. Who would have thought about using stems?! When it was time to get started, we began sautéing the vegetables and herbs together to let the flavors blend. After a few minutes on the stove my group was beginning to get very hungry. The smell of the herbs blending with the vegetables was so fragrant that I felt like I had been transported to a kitchen in Italy. I was ready to eat, but there was more work to be done.
For the Bolognese sauce, we used equal parts ground beef, veal, and pork and incorporated it with the mixture of vegetables and herbs.
Next, it was time to add in the white wine and tomato paste to the saucepan and let it simmer for a few minutes. It was beginning to look like Bolognese sauce!
Once our sauce was simmering, we watched a thorough demonstration on preparing dough for Italian pasta. We learned that the secret to the perfect homemade Italian pasta is using a high gluten flour. High gluten flour adds texture and strength you want to form the perfect Italian pasta. Our dough was prepared in advance in order to save time. However, Jamie wanted to demonstrate the importance of kneading the dough outward and how to run the dough through the pasta maker.
We rolled the dough into five flat sheets which we covered with flour to smooth out any stickiness. The pasta maker took flat pieces of dough and created these beautiful tagliatelle noodles ready for the drying rack. What a work of art!
After the noodles cooked, I could hardly wait to see the finished work of art. Not only was the food well-plated, but the earthy flavor of the ragu sauce combined with the light crunch in the vegetables was pleasant and delicious.
I’m so glad CourseHorse gave me the opportunity to learn the art of Italian pasta making at Dabble. I’m even more excited to offer one lucky reader the chance to win $100 towards a Nashville CourseHorse class. To enter the drawing, click here.
For more cooking classes, click here.
What classes are you interested in taking?
**Disclaimer: I was not paid, but received a course to review. These thoughts and opinions were strictly my own.