How to make pasta at home with Issac Carew

Making homemade pasta from scratch is easier than you think. Here, classically trained chef Issac Carew shares his top tips for making fresh pasta at home, as well as a delicious recipe for crab linguine.

2 minutes to read
The Dirty Dishes1.jpg

Fresh, homemade pasta beats anything that can be bought in the supermarket, but making pasta from scratch can seem daunting. Here, classically trained chef Issac Carew lets us in on his top tips for how to make pasta at home and shares a delicious recipe for crab linguine.

It wasn’t until I was eighteen that I started making pasta. I’d been working for Angela Hartnett for three months and I was put on the pasta section. And that was that: I fell in love with using such a simple base ingredient to create a huge range of dishes. People always say to me that making pasta is too hard and time-consuming, needing lots of fancy equipment, but it’s actually really easy and cheap. It’s my mission to convert people to making pasta from scratch as it makes such a huge difference to the taste, is really cost-effective and, once you get the hang of it, very relaxing to whip up.

My top tips for mastering fresh pasta at home:

  • Total time

  • Prep time

  • Amount

  • Ingredients
    • 400g grade ‘00’ Tipo flour
    • 6 medium egg yolks
    • 3 medium eggs
    • 1 tbsp olive oil
    • Semolina flour for dusting (optional)
  • Pour the flour into a pile on a clean work surface. Using your fingers, make a well in the top of the pile. Whisk the egg yolks and whole eggs in a bowl, pouring in the olive oil as you go.
  • Pour the egg mixture into the well in the flour, mixing together with a fork or your fingertips until you reach a light, breadcrumb-like texture. Continue to bring the dough together. Knead for a few minutes to strengthen the gluten – it should become smooth, silky and slightly shiny.
    Once you’ve kneaded the pasta dough, wrap it in cling film and immediately place in the fridge. Leave to rest for at least 30 minutes.
    Once the dough has rested, cut it in half and flatten each half with a rolling pin, until you have an almost rectangle shape, the same width as the pasta machine.
  • Set your pasta machine to its widest setting. Flour your pasta dough and roll it through the machine twice. Then roll the pasta once through each of the settings, working your way down to the second-from-thinnest setting (or the thinnest setting if you want seriously thin pasta).
  • Cut your pasta into the required shape and either use straight away, or dust in semolina flour and hang so it dries out. Dried fresh pasta usually keeps for a week or two.
  • Total time

  • Prep time

  • Amount

  • Ingredients
    • Sea salt
    • Olive oil
    • 1 shallot finely chopped
    • 2 garlic cloves chopped
    • ½ medium red chilli sliced (see tip)
    • 1 sprig of thyme
    • leaves only
    • 100ml white wine
    • 1 x 400g tin of chopped tomatoes
    • 360g linguine
    • 100g white crab meat
    • 1 tbsp mascarpone
    • Juice of ½ lemon
    • A few chives
    • finely chopped
    • to serve

Whack a saucepan of salted water on to boil. In the meantime, heat a medium frying pan over a low to medium heat, add a little olive oil and sauté the shallot and garlic until sweet and tender.

Add the chilli to the pan, along with the thyme leaves and cook for a few minutes. Next, add the white wine and cook over a medium heat for another minute or two until the sauce is reduced. Finally, add the chopped tomatoes and simmer for 5 minutes.

Chuck the linguine in the salted boiling water and cook until al dente. Retaining 1–1½ ladles of the pasta water, strain the pasta and set aside.

Add the crab meat and mascarpone to the sauce, then fold the sauce through the pasta, adding the reserved water. This will give extra gloss to the dish and a deeper taste. Finish with a little drizzle of olive oil, the lemon juice and a sprinkling of chives.

The Dirty Dishes

by Isaac Carew

Book cover for The Dirty Dishes

'A really great kitchen companion, full of easy-to-follow tasty dishes based on good-quality ingredients.' – Gizzi Erskine

Classically trained chef and model Isaac Carew takes it back to the kitchen with his debut cookbook The Dirty Dishes, featuring the fun, delicious and tasty food that’s inspired his life-long love of cooking.

The Dirty Dishes is a fresh and modern collection of one hundred recipes: from lazy brunches to easy weekday suppers, and from vegan delights to late-night bites. He shares new takes on classics including Poached Salmon Niçoise, celebrates his love of pasta with Lasagne, Crab Linguine and Butternut Squash Cannelloni, and introduces more adventurous yet surprisingly easy recipes like Tamarind Treacle Tart. Bursting with flavour, the book reveals the secrets of Isaac's culinary training and gives you everything you need to get a bit messy and have fun in the kitchen.

Isaac's dad and godfather both worked in kitchens, so Isaac grew up washing mussels and leafy greens. He qualified as a chef in his teens and went on to work in some of the best restaurants in the world. Since then, via a high-profile modelling career, Isaac has nurtured his passion for great cooking and diverse food with the fashion capitals as his inspiration.

'Unassailable culinary credentials.' – The Times