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As a child growing up, special occasions were celebrated with handmade macaroni. We don’t make them as much these days, which is unfortunate because it was a lot of fun sitting around the table gossiping and laughing. Demonstrated at the 2011 Melbourne Food and Wine Festival.
Place the flour in a mound and make a well in the centre, add the eggs and the salt. With a fork start beating the eggs and gradually mix some of the flour till it starts to thicken. Now with your hands mix it all together till you have a ball of dough. Knead it for about 10–15 minutes till it is elastic and smooth. If it is too wet you can always add a little more flour.
Divide dough in half and roll one half till you have long sausage shape about 1½ cm wide. When you have a long length of dough cut it into 3 cm lengths. You have to work quickly as the pieces will dry, only do a few at a time. Keep the rest of the dough under a damp cloth while you are rolling.
Lay out a clean cloth on a bench top to place the macaroni on as you make them. You will need a clean smooth surface to work on and a little flour to stop the dough from sticking. Place the knitting needle lengthways on top of a length of dough. Roll the needle backwards and forwards, working you hands away from the centre outwards.
Gently pull the dough away from the knitting needle and place on the cloth. Keep rolling till you have finished all the dough.
Bring a pot of salted water to the boil, add the macaroni and cook for 2–5 minutes depending on the size you have made.
Serve with a ragu or simple tomato sauce and lots of grated parmesan.
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