4 large eggs
31/2 - 4 cups King Arthur Unbleached all purpose flour (add more as needed to make unsticky dough)
2-3 tablespoons coarse black pepper
1 tsp salt
To make the dough in a food processor, put the eggs in the bowl of the processor and process until smooth. In a bowl, mix 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour and salt. Add the flour mixture to the yolks 1 cup at a time and process just until a ball of dough starts to form. This is where you start to learn how much flour to add. Keep adding flour if the dough seems very wet. The dough should not be so sticky that it clings to your fingers. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead it, adding additional flour as necessary, for about 5 minutes or until smooth. Cover and let rest for 10 minutes before rolling out and cutting into the desired shape.
To make the dough the traditional way, combine 3 cupsall-purpose flour, and salt in a mound on a work surface. Make a well in the center of the flour and break the eggs, adding only the yolks into the well. Then add the pepper. Beat the yolks with a fork. Then, using the fork, gradually incorporate the flour from the inside walls of the well. When the dough becomes too firm to mix with the fork, knead it with your hands, incorporating just enough of the flour to make a soft but sticky dough. You may not need all the flour. Brush the excess flour aside and knead the dough, adding additional flour as necessary, for about 10 minutes or until smooth. Cover and let rest for 10 minutes before rolling out and cutting into the desired shape.
Cut the dough into 4 pieces. Work with 1 piece at a time, keeping the remaining dough covered. Roll the dough out on a floured surface as thin as possible, or use a pasta machine to roll the dough out to the thinnest setting. Drape the sheets of pasta over dowel rods suspended between 2 chairs to dry slightly, about 5 minutes.
If cutting the pasta by hand, roll up each sheet loosely like a jelly roll, then cut it into fettucine, vermicelli, or lasagna strips with a sharp knife. Or cut the pasta into the desired width with the attachment on the pasta machine. Hang the pasta strips over dowel rods as you cut them, or spread on floured towels, then cook immediately or dry for storage.
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