Mamma di Rossana is one of the hardest-working (and nicest!) women I know in Italy. Her name is actually Giuliana, but to me she will always be Mamma di Rossana. Rossana is one of my good friends and Giuliana is her mother – so there you have it.
In addition to holding the title of “super nice person”, Mamma di Rossana is also a traditional cook, passing along the time-honored ways of a proper cucina italiana and, believe me, I take notes: The best days to buy fish are Tuesdays and Fridays from the man who drives the fresh fish van, table grapes should never be confused with wine grapes, and the delicate, finely sliced pasta, taglialini, is outstanding when added to soups.
To make Mamma di Rossana’s taglialini (literally “tiny cuts”) you will need:
- baking flour (I prefer unbleached)
- fresh eggs
Forget about measured amounts. Just place a mound of flour on a clean surface (a granite counter top or large wooden cutting board works fine). Make a well in the mound of flour. Add 2 eggs to the flour and whisk with a fork until blended.
Begin to fold the eggs into the flour until you can form the dough with your hands. Knead the ball of dough with vigor, adding flour only when needed to keep the dough from sticking. When dough is elastic and smooth, form it into a ball and set it aside so it can rest for a few minutes.
Using a rolling pin, roll out the dough to about 1/8 thick, using a little flour only when necessary to keep the dough from sticking. Gently fold the rolled dough, starting at opposite ends, toward the center. Cut into strips about 1/8 inch wide. That’s taglialini!
Use taglialini in recipes for soup or light, seafood sauces.