Homemade garganelli pasta is such a fun pasta shape to make at home and this step by step guide is the only one you need. I'll take you through all the tips and tricks to make perfect garganelli that keeps its shape and cooks perfectly. All you need is some squares of fresh egg pasta dough and a gnocchi board. The perfect activity for a weekend afternoon, invite some friends over to give it a try!
Hi! I am writing up this guide for homemade fresh garganelli and I really hope you give it a try! Making your own pasta really is a fun way to spend a couple of hours. This tubular pasta hails from the Emilia Romagna region and I first saw it on the Pasta Grannies channel and instantly fell in love.
Squares of pasta are rolled into a tube with a wooden stick over a gnocchi board or pasta comb. It resembles penne rigate with it's ridged surface. With a few tips and tricks, it's a really simple shape to make and sauce clings to the grooves in the best way.
First you will need the perfect pasta dough and lucky for you mine is! Garganelli needs a really perfectly hydrated dough, not too sticky and not too dry. So use my Easy Homemade Pasta Dough as your starting point. With this dough you can also try homemade pappardelle, sorpresine or try making some homemade ravioli.
What you'll need
- Flour - As I explain in more detail in my pasta dough recipe, pasta dough is made from either all '00' flour (or all purpose flour) or part '00' and part fine semolina. Known as Semola Rimacinata this flour is a durum wheat semolina and adds an al dente bite to fresh pasta. More importantly here, it adds structure. Garganelli are notorious for losing their shape so using some semolina in the dough is quite key.
- Room temperature eggs - I weigh my eggs so the dough is perfectly hydrated. Put a bowl on your scales then crack eggs in until you get to the right weight. You can make up the weight with extra virgin olive oil or crack a last egg into a cup, mix up and then dribble in.
- Pasta machine - I use a marcato or the kitchen aid attachment.
- Gnocchi or garganelli board - You also need a wooden stick or dowel to go with it. A clean wooden pencil will do the trick too! The traditional garganelli tool is called a pettina or pasta comb.
- Wooden board - Key for any pasta making. Use it to cut the little squares on and have your gnocchi board on top of it so it doesn't slide around.
- Sharp knife or pizza cutter - You can also a pasta wheel or adjustable pasta cutter which makes cutting super easy but a knife is fine.
- Baking tray - Line a tray with parchment paper and dusted with semolina for the finished shapes to sit on.
Expert tips for retaining the shape
One of the trials of making garganelli is the tubes flattening and losing their shape. Follow these tips below! Please remember, homemade pasta isn't supposed to be perfect, if it flattens a bit it will still be delicious!
- Only roll ¼ (or even ⅙th) of your dough at a time, keeping the remaining dough tightly wrapped.
- Roll your pasta slightly thicker than usual. I would normally roll pasta to setting 6 or 7 on my marcato but for garganelli I go to setting 5. You end up rolling it thinner when it's on the gnocchi board.
- Do try and find some semola rimacinata (very fine semolina) to add into the dough. It helps to give the shape some structure and strength.
- Let the squares dry out ever so slightly before rolling them. This helps them keep their shape. Even just 5 minutes as it still needs to stick together.
- Let the finished garganelli sit out for at least an 1 hour to dry out slightly before boiling.
- If they start to flatten then give them a gentle squeeze back into a round tube.
- Freeze them! Freezing will help the garganelli keep their shape. See more on this below.
Step by step garganelli!
Make sure you check out the tutorial video in the recipe card below.
ONE: Cut your pasta sheets into even 2-inch squares (4 - 5cm).
TWO: Place the square on your gnocchi board so it's a diamond shape in front of you. Place your wooden dowel (or pencil!) at the bottom.
THREE: Curl the bottom corner over the dowel and start to roll up.
FOUR: Keep rolling so it creates a tube and press down so the top corner sticks.
FIVE: Roll back and forth a couple of times to thin the pasta down slightly.
SIX: The garganelli should slide off the dowel really easily. Place on a baking tray lined with parchment paper
SEVEN: Allow the finished garganelli to sit out for 30 mins - 1 hour to dry out slightly, loosely covered with plastic wrap. This helps them retain their shape. If they start to flatten then give them a gentle squeeze through the middle back into a tube shape.
Storing and cooking tips
Garganelli benefits from drying out on the bench which helps preserve the shape. You can dry garganelli on your bench top completely for 2 - 3 hours and then keep in an airtight container for a week or so. I don't love storing fresh pasta so I tend to freeze them if not cooking straight away.
To freeze, pop the dried pasta in the freezer open on a tray for 20 minutes then transfer to an airtight container or freezer bag to cook from frozen. They will live happily in the freezer for up to three months.
Fresh pasta cooks so quick. Boil in a large pot of well salted water for 2-3 minutes. Check one after 2, it probably won't need much more. Have your water boiling while making your sauce and when it's almost ready drop the garganelli into the water. Transfer the pasta straight into the sauce, I use a spider strainer for this.
Serve with the sauce of your choice. I love letting pasta gently bubble away in the sauce for a minute or two. It helps the pasta take on flavour and also helps to thicken the sauce.
Want some other pasta shapes to try?
I love making accessible and easy to follow homemade pasta recipes so you can achieve pasta at home really easily. If you loved this garganelli pasta recipe then I have lots of other shapes to try. Sorpresine, meaning little surprises is also made using flat squares of pasta so check that one out next.
Hand rolled shapes are my favourite and they mostly use my semolina pasta dough and also no pasta machine. Try my hand rolled gnocchi sardi, it's hands down the easiest pasta shape to make. Homemade orecchiette is my personal fave, it takes a bit of practice but worth it!
Need some sauce inspiration?
I have lots of delicious pasta sauces that will work perfectly with garganelli. My most recent Creamy Sausage Pasta used this shape so definitely check that out. They will be perfect with my Best Bolognese Sauce or go for a quick and simple Creamy Tomato Pasta.
Made this recipe and loved it?
I would love love LOVE if you could leave me a review down below and let me know what you thought! I love to hear any changes or adaptions you have made too. Also if you put a photo on instagram, please tag me so I can see, it makes my day!Print