So many memories of cooking with my grandmother, Dorothy, came flooding back over the past 10 days as we celebrated her rich and enduring life. Memory No. 1 is, without a doubt, her homemade egg noodles. This is her recipe.
When I first asked her to show me how to make egg noodles, she gave me the whole “a pinch of this and some of that” routine … and I was like, “C’mon Grandma, I need a recipe!” She managed to actually document her homemade noodle recipe for her cookbook, “Home Cooking with Dave’s Mom.” Still, there’s a lot of feel to making noodles. The dough should feel smooth and not sticky. When you roll it out, it should be so thin you can see type on a newspaper page through it. When it’s dry enough, it will feel rough, like the outside of a baking potato.
I have plans to do a whole lot of cooking in Dorothy’s honor in the coming weeks. Making her recipes connects me to her. I will feel her hand on my shoulder as I’m muscling the rolling pin. I will hear her say, “Hi, darlin’.” She’ll be right here, in my kitchen. Always.
HOMEMADE EGG NOODLE RECIPE
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon table salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
1–3 teaspoons water
In a small bowl, whisk the eggs and the salt together. Place the flour in a large bowl, and make a well in the center. Add the egg/salt mixture and stir with a fork to combine. Add 1 teaspoon of water and stir to combine. If the dough feels dry or crumbly, add more water a few drops at a time. Dig your hands into the dough and knead for 2 or 3 minutes to combine thoroughly, adding more water or flour if needed to create a smooth dough that's slightly tacky. Transfer the dough to a flour-dusted pastry cloth and divide it into thirds. Turn the mixing bowl over the dough to cover it and let it rest for 30 minutes. Take one portion of dough and dust it liberally (and the pastry cloth) with flour; roll it into a large circle that's as paper-thin as you can get it. If the dough seems too stretchy and doesn't want to roll, let it rest for another 30 minutes. Repeat rolling the other two portions of dough. Set the rolled dough rounds aside on paper towel to dry. The dried dough should feel slightly leathery: rough on the surface but still pliable. When it reaches this point, roll each round into a cylinder and cut the dough into 1/2-inch strips. Unfurl the noodles and place them on a rimmed baking sheet to dry, preferably overnight, tossing occasionally to ensure even drying. To store your homemade egg noodles, place them in a zip-top plastic bag; they'll keep well for 6 months. Cook the noodles for 5 to 8 minutes in well-salted boiling water.