Grandma’s noodles are so easy! I can’t believe that these ingredients make the most delicious egg noodles I’ve ever tasted. No measuring, no actual recipe, just a few ingredients and 15 minutes and you have yourself homemade noodles that would impress anybody!
I love my hubby’s grandma. I joined the family when I was only 19 years old. Since then, she has taught me skills people used to naturally pass down to the next generation – quilting, canning, baking bread, making noodles, whipping up a batch of pancakes. Somehow these things are becoming a lost art.
Years ago, I asked my Grandma to tell me how to make noodles. She said, “oh you just use an egg and half a shell of water. Add a pinch of salt and keep adding flour until it’s not shiny anymore…” OK, I was lost. Not shiny anymore? I needed a tutorial.
So when we went to the lodge for Christmas that year, Grandma gave me a live, in person tutorial on making egg noodles. I’m passing her wisdom on to you via pictures. I hope you will be able to replicate these delicacies. You won’t be sorry!
How to make Grandma’s noodles
I’ve been whipping them up ever since that Christmas day. There’s something so comforting in knowing that if you have just a couple ingredients, you can make a delicious meal for your family. Grandma’s noodles to the rescue! No grocery store needed!
Step 1 – whisk ingredients with a fork
In a small mixing bowl, crack an egg. Then take one side of the egg shell and fill it up with water and add that. Grandma said that because all eggs differ in size, you will only know how much water to add by using the shell. That way, you have the perfect amount of water!
Whisk the water and egg together with a fork until it’s combined. Add a pinch of salt and mix it up. Then you can begin adding the flour!
Step 2 – Add flour one spoonful at a time
Begin adding flour one spoon at a time, whisking with the fork between additions of flour. At first, it will be quite liquid and a little lumpy. That’s totally fine! It looks a bit like pancake batter at first. Then it starts to thicken up and make itself into a ball. That’s what you’re looking for.
Keep doing this until you get a dough-like consistency. This is where Grandma’s noodle expertise comes in. Do you see how the dough is still shiny in the photo above? That tells us it still needs more flour. Add a little more, one spoon at a time until it looks like this photo below.
It gets pretty hard to mix it with a fork at this point, so I always turn it out onto a lightly floured counter top.
Step 3 – Kneading Grandma’s noodles
Knead it for a few minutes until it comes together nicely. It won’t be the same texture as bread dough. It should look like the photo below. Mostly, I’m just looking for all the shininess and stickiness to go away. At this point, you can cover it with plastic wrap and allow it to rest for 30 minutes.
Honestly, I am a pretty last minute person, so I am usually making it right as I need it. If you’re like me, this rest period is not necessary. When you’re dealing with gluten, you need to let it rest so that it won’t spring back over and over.
However, if you don’t have time to let it rest, it just takes a couple extra minutes to roll it out because you have to fight that springiness a little. But it still works totally fine!
Step 4 – roll it out
Right away, or after the 30 minute rest, roll it out with a rolling pin until it’s thin and even. Try to keep it the same thickness all the way through. If the noodles are different thicknesses, they will cook at different rates.
How thick do you roll them out?
This is all personal preference! Grandma’s noodles were always super fat and so I like to make mine the same way. They do get fatter as you cook them, so don’t make them too thick the first time you make them. That way you can get a sense for how they plump up when you cook them.
Step 5 – cut them
There are a few different ways you can cut these. My mom made noodles when I was a little girl and I remember her rolling the dough and using a sharp knife to cut them. I find it easier to use a pizza cutter to cut the noodles into strips.
They don’t have to be perfect. They are homemade…you don’t want people to think you bought them at the grocery store! I usually cut them into thin strips and then cut the strips crossways into about 2 inch chunks. Again, Grandma’s noodles plump up when you cook them so don’t make them too big or you won’t be able to get those fat, dumpling like noodles onto your spoon!
While I mostly use this recipe for chicken noodle soup, I have occasionally used it for a bowl of pasta. If you’re looking for long noodles to top with sauce, you don’t have to cute them into smaller chunks. Just leave them in nice long strips.
Step 6 – boil or dry for later
At this point, you have two options. You can boil them to use immediately. Or you can dry them to save for a later date. I’ll give you instructions on how to do either.
Boiling to use immediately:
If you want to eat Grandma’s noodles right away, you can boil them up and eat them immediately. When you use them in chicken noodle soup, you’ll want to cook them in boiling chicken stock so that they soak up all that flavor.
However, if you are using them in a bowl and topping them with sauce, you can just boil them in water. These would be super yummy with my homemade oregano pesto on them! Add a sprinkle of parmesan, and you’ll be in heaven! I digress..
Bring a pot of water to a boil. Salt the water and add the egg noodles.
I usually use a spatula to get them to the pot, then separate them with my fingers as I add them to the boiling stock or water. If you toss them in all together in a clump, they will stay like that and you’ll have hunks of half-raw noodles in your soup. Gross! It’s worth the extra effort to separate them. If there’s a bit of flour on them, no concerns. It will just thicken the soup.
Cook them for about 5 minutes. Depending on how thick you cut them, you may need more time to cook them. After they are cooked to your liking, strain them and use immediately.
Dry to use later:
The best thing about Grandma’s noodles is that you don’t have to eat them right away! Before you cut them into smaller pieces, you can take the long strips and dry them to use later.
You’ll want to make sure you have a way to let the air circulate around them. If you’re fancy, you might have a noodle rack. Sadly, I’m not fancy yet! So I improvise. These are the two ways I’ve done it.
First, you could lay Grandma’s noodles over a cooling rack and let them dry overnight. This works just fine.
Another way you can do it is to drape the long noodles over your oven handle and let them dry overnight this way. That works great too!
The next day, you can break them onto noodle sized chunks and store them in an air tight container.
Make sure they are super duper dry!
One caution I have is to make sure the noodles are super duper dry. It’s better to leave them drying for longer if you’re not sure they are dry enough – especially if you made them really thick.
If you store them and they still have moisture in them, they will mold. That is so sad because all that work ends up being for nothing! And that is enough to make you want to cry!