Bffr, it's too cold to go outside. So stay in this weekend and get your chef-on by making Homemade Cavatelli—trust us its worth the effort. Impress yourself and your friends.
- FOR THE CAVATELLI
- 8 c. semolina flour, plus more for dusting
- 1 c. lukewarm water, plus more as needed
- FOR THE GARLIC CHILI OIL
- ½ c. plus 2 tbsp. high-quality extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- 6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
- 1 tbsp. crushed red pepper flakes
- Kosher salt
- 1 c. freshly grated Pecorino Romano
- Make the cavatelli: On a clean countertop, form the flour into a circular mound with an empty circle in the middle. (You’re creating a large ring of flour.) In small increments, slowly add water into the center of the mound while kneading the dough. Continue adding water and kneading until consistency is smooth and homogeneous, about 15 minutes. (If dough is too wet or sticky, dust with flour and knead more.)
- Wrap dough in plastic wrap and let rest for 45 minutes at room temperature.
- Lightly dust a clean countertop with flour. Break off a handful of dough (rewrap remaining dough while you work) and roll into a ½"-wide rope. Using a knife or bench scraper, cut strips into 2" pieces.
- Press each piece firmly in the center with your thumb and proceed to roll the dough away from you in an outward motion.
- Dust cavatelli with a bit more flour and place on a baking sheet. (If you’re not using all the cavatelli right away, freeze in a single layer, then transfer to resealable plastic bags and freeze up to 1 month.)
- Meanwhile, make the garlic chili oil: In a large skillet, combine ½ cup oil and garlic. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until garlic begins to brown, about 2 minutes. Add red pepper flakes and reduce heat to low. Cook for 1 minute more.
- To a large pot of boiling water, add 4 tablespoons salt. Cook cavatelli until they float to the top, about 1 minute. Using a slotted spoon or small sieve, transfer cavatelli to skillet with the chili oil. Reserve the pasta water.
- Toss the cavatelli a few times to incorporate, then create a creamy, silky sauce by adding the remaining 2 tablespoons oil and some pasta water to the skillet over medium-high heat, tossing frequently.
- Add ¾ cup Pecorino Romano and toss until creamy, adding more pasta water to loosen if it’s too thick. Season with salt.
- Top with remaining ¼ cup Pecorino Romano and serve.
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