Easy, fun to make and ….soo good, buo-nis-si-ma! (don’t worry, I’m not going to kill your appetite with syllables this week!). Avete indovinato? Did you guess what it is? Home made pasta! Pasta fatta in casa. I’m always looking for something fun, and social to make during our classes, and I figured fresh pasta would be a nice idea. I tried some recipes, and my favorite was Sonia Peronaci’s from Giallo Zafferano, probably the best Italian food blog around. Sonia, sei un mito!
Now, if you watch her videos, she makes everything look easy, but if you are human like me, why would you strain yourself with a rolling pin to obtain a super thin ½ millimeter dough layer (so thin I don’t even know how to convert it), when you can use a pasta machine worth $30, have fun and save some time and frustration? Sure, you can still make some mistakes, and there might be occasional cursing in the kitchen if your beautiful looking ravioli get stuck on the counter top that you didn’t flour well enough….yes, that happened to me and I couldn’t even express myself properly because my kids were watching the whole scene….. So, learn from my mistakes, get a pasta machine and use plenty of flour and parchment paper! Ora basta parlare! E’ ora di mangiare! Stop blabbering; it’s time to eat!
Ingredients for about 40 ravioli:
For the dough: 250 gr. (2 cups) flour – FARINA 00; 2 whole eggs and 1 yolk – 2 uova e un tuorlo; a pinch of salt – un pizzico di sale; 2 tbsp. warm water – due cucchiai di aqua tiepida.
For the filling: 125 gr. (4.40 OZ) Spinach - spinach; 125 gr. (4.40)Ricotta cheese - ricotta; 50 gr. (1.7Oz) grated Parmesan cheese – parmigiano grattugiato; Nutmeg – noce moscata.
Start making the dough forming a mound (una montagnetta) with the flour; make a well in the center, add eggs and salt. With a fork, mix the ingredients by dragging the flour in the center, until you form a sticky dough ball. Add water as needed to incorporate all flour. The dough should feel soft and moist. On a floured surface, Knead dough ball for about 10 minutes until it’s elastic and smooth, but no longer sticky. Make dough into a ball, and to prevent it from drying wrap it in plastic wrap; let it rest for about one hour. Meanwhile, take care of the filling. Sautee the spinach, add salt and pepper. Place it in a food processor; add ricotta, Parmesan cheese and a zest of nutmeg. Puree it. Once time has passed, get busy with the pasta machine to make a thin layer of dough (start with the widest setting on the regulator knob and go down to the narrowest) you’ll have to do it a couple of times to get the right shape; just fold it, lightly flour and run trough the rollers until you get it right. Once you have your sheet of pasta, place it on a floured working surface or parchment paper and distribute the filling in small portions on the sheet. Leave enough space to create ravioli of about 1-½ inches. Make another sheet of pasta and place it on top of the other with the spinach filling. Remember to use a scale to measure the dough before you start with the pasta machine, so you’ll know the 2 sheets will turn out the same size and shape. Using your hands, start giving the ravioli a shape and get rid of air bubbles. With a cutter, cut the ravioli in 1, ½ squares.
Bring salted water to a boil, and cook your ravioli for about 4 minutes. Drain, add your favorite condiment (we used sage, olive oil and grated cheese) and enjoy them immediately. Fantastici, look!
Pillola d’italiano: Volete sapere come si chiama il bianco dell’uovo?? What’s the Italian word for the egg white? ALBUME!