This is my Gran’s basic egg noodle recipe, passed down from her grandmother. It makes up easily, and best of all, once the noodles are cut, you can flash freeze them, bag them, and drop them (frozen) into soups of all kinds for an instant homestyle addition to the meal. Very helpful for busy households!
These differ from some homemade noodles, as they have flavor all on their own. You can reduce the flavorings, or vary them to your own taste. The parsley gives a nice bit of visual interest.
The recipe can be scaled up for larger batches; it’s helpful to use a stand mixer with a paddle attachment for 3-egg or larger batches. A 1-egg batch will make enough noodles for two decent pots of soup for our family of six.
Being a “heritage” recipe, the quantities are a little sketchy, but the details are flexible, and they’re hard to ruin.
1/2 to 1 teaspoon salt
1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
1/8 to 1/4 granulated garlic or garlic powder
about 1 tablespoon dried parsley flakes
Beat in 1/2 cup all purpose flour, forming a smooth paste. Add more flour in small amounts to form a moderately stiff dough. Knead smooth. You’ll use anywhere from 1 to 1.5 cups of flour, total, or just a bit more… this will vary depending on the day’s humidity, your flour, and your altitude, so trust your fingers. When they say, “Oh, nice dough, just a little sticky”, you’ve got it.
Mixing and kneading will activate some of the gluten in the dough, making it hard to roll out. Divide the dough into two or three portions, form into small discs, and let the dough rest, covered, for at least 10 minutes to get the gluten relaxed.
Roll out the dough discs, adding flour as needed to reduce sticking. Rolling will also prompt gluten formation, so when the dough begins to fight you, don’t fight back. Flour it well, and set that portion aside while you repeat the rolling/flouring with the two other portions. Rotate through rolling each one out and resting each one.
The trick with homemade noodles is in rolling them thin. As you add flour and roll, the noodle dough will get a bit more firm, and you should be able to roll them very thin–about as thick as a business card or postcard.
When the sheets are very thin, sprinkle well with flour, and cut each sheet into strips about 2 to 3 inches wide. Stack three or four strips, and cut thin noodles across the width. You can cut them wide, to make 1/2″ by 3″ long noodles, or thinner, anywhere from 1/8″ to 1/4″ wide. I use a very sharp knife to cut straight down, or a pizza wheel to cut the stack.
Use your fingers to loosen the stacks and divide the cut noodles. You’ll be tossing them with a lot of flour.
Spread them out in a shallow layer, with their flour, on a baking sheet, and toss them into the freezer to “flash freeze” for about 15 minutes. At this point, they’ll be firm, and you can bag them for longer-term freezing without risking a huge noodle-clot.
To use the noodles, drop them into boiling broth or soup in the last five minutes of cooking time. They will plump slightly as they cook. Frozen noodles may take about 1 minute more in cooking time; do not defrost before dropping.
Because the noodles are frozen fresh, not dried, this pasta does not take so long as commercially-prepared pasta to cook!
Bagged frozen noodles should be used within about 45 days for maximum quality. I recommend not storing them in the door of the freezer, as this subjects them to too many temperature changes, and they can get freezer-burned more easily.
We make “Emergency Chicken Soup” very quickly, sauteeing some fresh diced onion and minced garlic, plus some chopped celery, then adding a quart-bag (or two) of frozen homemade broth brought to a boil, about two cups of cooked shredded chicken that has been frozen, slivered fresh carrots cooked about 15 minutes in that broth, and fresh (frozen) noodles dropped in at the last minute (with a handful of frozen peas if my husband will not be eating it)… a completely homemade meal, full of nutrients and flavor, in under 20 minutes.
And, if you’re in an area where Church Ladies bring meals over to families with new babies, or after surgery, or during any emotional crisis, Emergency Chicken Soup Kits do really well in other people’s freezers, too.