Making Pasta at Preschool – A Fun, Easy and Messy Project for Kids

hands Turn on the Oven Tuesday   Homemade PastaIf you follow this blog, you know I am a terrible cook.  I’m unmotivated, unimaginative and unwilling to make an even bigger mess of my kitchen.  If you met my mom, you would know where I get it from.  However, if you met my mother-in-law, you would know why we love for her to visit.  She is a cooking machine.

Every meal is made from scratch and is completely balanced with all the food groups.  And she insists on cleaning up after herself, as if her cooking has somehow been a nuisance to the rest of us.  As if that was a possibility.

Every year when she shows up at my kid’s preschool, she is asked to make pasta with the kids.  She always does, and always makes it look easy.

This year was Brooke’s turn to have Nana make pasta with her friends.

I’d like to give you the recipe, but my mother-in-law just dumps together some flour and some eggs and some oil… and suddenly there are homemade noodles. It’s like magic.

If you are like me, and like clear instructions on what to do, you can check THIS out.  Or, you can try and follow my mother-in-laws magic recipe.

For 15 kids, she used a dozen eggs, and 3/4 to 1 cup flour per egg, and mixed them together. She added about a tablespoon of oil, to make it more easy to work with, and about a teaspoon of salt. She had the kids help stir the mix and added more flour until it was workable but not too stiff.

We also made a batch for the children with egg allergies.  We just took a couple cups of flour and dripped in water while we stirred it with a fork.  Once it was the right consistency, we stopped adding water.

The next step was to knead and knead and knead on a floured tabled until all the lumps were out. Once every kid was sufficiently covered in flour (and the lumps where gone), the dough was divided into small sections and fed through the pasta maker.

The kids first flattened the dough with the Pasta Maker, and then they added more flour to the outside and fed them through the noodle side of the pasta maker.

The noodles were then dropped into the boiling water with a little oil.  (The oil keeps them from sticking together.) At preschool we used a big pot on a  hot plate. Getting the water to boiling took a while, but worked just fine.

After about 8 minutes we checked the noodles. We drained the water and served them to the kids with a little salt and butter (or red sauce for the adventurous ones).

We cooked the egg free noodles separately and surprisingly, they stayed together pretty well.  We were pleased that all the kids got to enjoy the class project.

Every kid ate a bowl full and most came back seconds or thirds.

Even baby James stopped by to enjoy a bowl of noodles.  He was a newborn when we did this project last year.  Boy how time flies.

This project is always fun and gets everyone involved.  Letting 15 kids help and then eat the noodles at a comfortable pace takes about 2 hours.

The project is a little messy, but I’ll take a flour mess to glitter and paint any day.  And it’s not really that hard.  So maybe, just maybe, I’ll try this with my 3 kids… even when my MIL is not in town!

 

 


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