Pasta is a delicious dish, and it's even better when it's made from scratch. Whether you're new to the world of pasta making or consider yourself a pro, pasta makers help you create incredible meals right in your own kitchen.
Before you find a pasta maker, there are specific qualities to look for as well as some crucial accessories to ensure that your pasta making endeavor is easier. We've created a helpful guide that will inspire you to try pasta-making at home for a fabulous (and filling) dinnertime experience.
What Types of Pasta Makers are Available?
There are two basic types of pasta makers available, and each one has its own set of pros and cons. Depending on your experience level or your personal preference, you can choose between a manual or an electric pasta maker. Let's take a closer look at the features of each and what makes them unique.
Manual Pasta Makers
If you need to roll out pasta and cut it into long shapes, a manual pasta maker is a good option. This style is great for cutting pasta like spaghetti or linguine. You attach the manual pasta maker to your countertops and use the hand crank to roll out the pasta.
It can take two people to operate a manual pasta maker -- one to hold the dough and the other to crank the handle. This method is quite time consuming, so it might not be the best option if you're making dinner in a hurry or if you don't have an extra hand.
This option is less expensive than an electric pasta maker, and you can upgrade most models by purchasing a motorized attachment.
Electric Pasta Makers
These pasta makers require an outlet to operate, and they're able to create a myriad of pasta shapes from long and slender to short and round. Certain electric pasta makers use a roller and cutter, while others use extruders to push out shapes that you cut by hand.
An automatic pasta maker mixes the dough and then extrudes it once it reaches the perfect consistency. These handy appliances still take some skill to master, and some extruder plates are difficult to clean.
Which Features Should I Look for in a Quality Pasta Maker?
If you're planning to make a homemade pasta dish part of your cooking routine, it's important to choose a high-quality appliance. Every brand or manufacturer offers various features and accessories, so it's good to know what to be aware of before you spend the money on a pasta maker.
Material: A high-quality pasta maker should be made of stainless steel for durability. Aluminum pasta makers are not quite as rugged, which means they could wear out faster or break.
Adjustable Settings: If you want to make pasta in a variety of thicknesses, be sure to choose something that allows you to adjust the pasta's thickness level. Ideally, you should choose a pasta maker that offers at least three or more settings so you can create different pasta dishes based on your chosen recipe.
Size: While you'll probably love using your new pasta maker, you don't want it to take up all of your counter space. Look for pasta makers that are compact so you can easily store them or attach them to an area in your kitchen while still having plenty of room to work.
Functionality: For easy pasta making, choose an electric pasta maker that kneads, mixes, and extrudes your pasta automatically. This option ensures you get the perfect texture and taste every time.
Easy Cleaning: Make sure your pasta maker is easy to clean and doesn't require a lot of extra maintenance. Pasta makers with a removable attachment that can be washed in the dishwasher after use make cleanup a breeze.
Aesthetics: If looks are a concern, be sure to choose a high-quality pasta maker boasting a bright reflective chrome finish. You can also find many brands that offer their pasta makers in a variety of fun colors like red, green, or blue to help your kitchen pop.
What Kind of Accessories Can You Buy for a Pasta Maker?
Most brands of pasta makers offer a variety of accessories to make your life easier. These handy accessories can help you create a variety of dishes, while some are designed to inspire you to get creative in the kitchen. Here are a few popular pasta maker accessories you can try out at home:
If you have a manual pasta maker and you're tired of doing things by hand, consider a motor attachment. This will transform your manual appliance into an electric one, which will speed up the process to save you time and effort.
Once you know what to look for in a pasta maker, cooking this homemade dish is easy and fun. Here are some quick tips to keep in mind before you purchase a pasta maker:
- Manual pasta makers are less expensive, but they also require more time and labor to use.
- Make sure your pasta maker is crafted of quality materials like steel for durability.
- An electric pasta maker will knead, mix, and extrude your ingredients for you, making the process easier and faster.
- Choose accessories that will give you more flexibility when making pasta at home, like a shape attachment or disc extruder to create a variety of pasta shapes.
- Have fun and come up with some unique recipes you can try at home for a delicious Italian meal any time you want.