For the pasta
3 egg yolks
1 to 2 Tbs. cold water
4 oz. baby spinach (about 4 cups)
12 oz. One Mighty Mill bread flour (about 2 3/4 cups)
½ tsp. kosher salt
For the marinara
3 Tbs. olive oil
2 garlic cloves, smashed
3 bay leaves
1 tsp. chopped fresh thyme
¼ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
One 28-oz can whole peeled tomatoes, pureed
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup freshly grated Parmigiano
- Puree the spinach for the pasta: Add the eggs and 1 Tbs. water to a blender along with the spinach and puree, scraping down the sides of the blender, until uniform and smooth. Add more water if needed to puree.
- Make the pasta dough: Add the flour and salt to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook. With the machine running on low speed, add the spinach mixture and mix - stopping once or twice to scrape dough off the hook and sides of the work bowl and adding a teaspoon of water or flour based on the texture of the dough – until it comes together into a shaggy dough, about 2 minutes. Raise the speed to medium and continue mixing until the dough becomes smooth and elasticky, about 4 more minutes.
- Knead the dough: Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface, and knead by hand until elastic and pliable, 3 to 5 minutes. If the dough is sticky, sprinkle with flour, 1 tsp at a time; if the dough is dry and cracking, sprinkle with water, a few droplets at a time. Cover the kneaded dough with a large bowl and let sit for 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, make the marinara: Add the olive oil, garlic, and bay leaves to a large pot over medium heat and cook, stirring occasionally, until the garlic sizzles steadily and starts to lightly brown in places, about 3 minutes. Add the thyme and red pepper flakes and then the tomato puree and ½ tsp. each salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer, then reduce the heat to medium and cook for 20 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Stretch and cut the pasta: Set up your pasta maker (at home, I love my table-top Imperia). Cut the dough in half. Reserve half in plastic wrap. Press the other half flat on a lightly floured work surface with the palm of your hand and then pass through the pasta machine at its widest setting. Fold the pasta over onto itself and continue passing and folding until the dough feels firm and elasticky, about 10 passes. Now, stretch out the pasta by passing it through the machine, sprinkling it with flour, and working on a tighter setting with each pass. Stretch all the way to the second tightest setting, then cut the pasta into 12 inch squares and let rest for 15 minutes. Slice with the tagliatelle attachement and dust the noodles with flour to avoid sticking.
- Cook the pasta: Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Season generously with salt and cook the pasta, stirring, until it just becomes tender, 2 to 3 minutes. Drain well, toss with the sauce, and serve sprinkled with the Parmigiano.