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Farfel derives from the Italian word farfalla, meaning butterfly, because of the butterfly shape of these tiny pieces of pasta. It can be bought ready for cooking or you can make it from scratch. Farfel is very versatile. It can be used as an addition to soup, as a side dish to accompany the main course, or to make a Schaleth
Servings: 6


  • all-purpose flour for dusting
  • 2 tablespoons shortening
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika

Fresh Noodle Dough

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt


  • Prepare the noodle dough and roll it out until it is 1/8 inch thick.
  • Cut dough into 1/4 inch strips, then sprinkle strips with more flour.
  • Using a large, sharp knife, chop strips into little pieces the size of grains of rice. (This can also be done in a food processor.)
  • Spread pieces to dry on paper towels, either in a warm place or in an oven with a pilot light or on its lowest setting, about 2 hours.
  • When dry, store farfel in an airtight container until you are ready to use it.
  • To cook farfel as a side dish, melt the shortening in a skillet. Add the farfel, in batches if necessary, to ensure that it can be turned easily to coat with shortening.
  • Stir constantly, taking care to not crush the pieces. When the farfel is an even, golden color, sprinkle with salt and paprika. The farfel will swell while cooking. Serve hot.

Fresh Noodle Dough

  • Sift the flour onto a board and make a well in the center.
  • Add the egg, water, and salt. Mix until the dough forms a ball. It should be very stiff, but if it will not stick together, you may have to add an extra teaspoon of water.
  • Knead well until the dough is smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. Shape into a ball, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  • Roll out the dough on a floured board until paper thin, and leave it to dry for about 30 minutes.
  • To slice the dough, either use a pasta machine, or roll it up like a jelly roll, and slice it crosswise at 1/4 inch or 1/16 inch intervals, depending on whether you want wide or thin noodles.
  • Shake the noodles to separate them, and hang them over a rack (or horizontal broom handle supported by 2 chairs) to dry in a warm, dry place, up to 3 to 4 hours.
  • When noodles are completely dry, store in a jar with a tight-fitting lid; they will keep as long as packaged noodles.
  • To cook, place noodles in rapidly boiling salted water: 5 minutes for thick, 2 minutes for thin.
  • Add noodles to boiling soup or use in noodle dishes.
Cuisine Jewish
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