It’s usually best to cook your fresh pasta right away, but the timing doesn’t always work that way. There’s no reason you can’t make your fresh pasta ahead of time and if stored properly, it will be just like it was when you first made it. The method you use to store the pasta all depends on when you plan on cooking it.
I will often make the dough first thing in the morning if I know I will be using it that night. While the dough can easily rest at room temperature for 3 hours, I don’t like to leave it out for much longer than that. In this case; I will make the dough, wrap it in plastic wrap like usual, then put it in the refrigerator right away. I will then remove it from the fridge 2 to 3 hours before I plan on rolling it out so it can properly rest at room temperature. You want to rest it after refrigerating and not before. If it’s going to be longer than 2 days, you can freeze the ball of dough, then leave it out at room temperature 3 to 5 hours before you plan on rolling it out to thaw and rest.
Store cut pasta on parchment-lined sheet pans with plenty of semolina four. Semolina flour is your best friend when it comes to preventing the pasta from sticking to itself and the sheet pan. Don’t be stingy with it. Cover the bottom of the sheet pan with a thin layer of semolina and place form nests of the cut pasta and place on top of the semolina. Gently pick the pasta up with your fingers to mix in some of the semolina so the cut noodles to not stick to themselves.
If you plan on cooking the pasta within an hour, just store on the counter in a parchment lined sheet pan with plenty of semolina flour.
If it’s going to be a few hours, store on a sheet pan with semolina and place in the refrigerator.
If it’s going to be longer than a few hours, you can freeze it. Place the pasta on a sheet pan with semolina flour, then place in the freezer for 30 minutes to an hour, or until the pasta is frozen enough to not stick together. Then move the pasta to zip lock freezer bags to store for up to two weeks.
Stuffed pasta can be stored using the same method, but it is very important to never cover stuffed pasta. Covering the stuff pasta can trap moisture from the filling and make for a sticky mess and possibly stuffed pasta that leaks its contents when cooked.
You can also dry your cut noodles by hanging them on noodle drying racks, hangers or a dowel for around 24 to 48 hours, or until dried. This isn’t a method I use very often.
Happy pasta cooking!