Whenever Dan and I invite guests over for their first meal at our place, we often serve up fresh pasta as our main starch. Guests are always surprised at not only how tasty fresh pasta is but also how quickly it can be made. This is because we usually complete the final preparation of rolling out the pasta, cutting, cooking, and dressing the pasta within minutes right before their eyes.
Making fresh pasta at home is way easier than you think. In fact, you would be surprised to learn that the cooking time for fresh pasta is faster than waiting for the water to boil and cooking boxed pasta.
The one thing that we have found crucial to making pasta is a kitchen scale. This removes any of the guesswork and "feel" when you often read other pasta recipes. Using a kitchen scale also makes it much easier to increase the quantity of pasta you make with predictable results.
We find that 2 eggs is enough for the two of us but when we have guests over we usually use 5 medium sized eggs.
Once you have your eggs and flour measured out, mix the eggs into the flour using the paddle hook in your Kitchen Aid for a few minutes until combined. Scrape the dough onto a sheet of plastic wrap and then wrap the dough tightly and let it sit in the fridge for about 20 minutes. This extra 20 minutes will make your dough consistency more even and also make it easier to roll.
Take small fist-sized chunks of the pasta dough, thread it through the pasta maker twice through each setting. I usually prefer a slightly thinner pasta so I start on setting 1 (on our pasta roller, the thickest setting is "1" meaning the rollers are furthest apart) and then run each sheet through until setting 6 (the rollers get closer with each setting). The higher the setting the thinner the pasta dough will be.