Mushroom Ravioli

I had the day off work today, which made it the perfect day to try a labour-intensive recipe I hadn’ t tried before.  The only homemade pasta I’ve made before is spaetzle (which, delicious as it is, only half counts since it’s not Italian).  So I thought I’d give this recipe (from the Perfect Pasta and Sauces Company’s Coming) a try.  It takes a bit of time, but it’s not terribly difficult.  The amounts given below serve 4, but I cut the recipe in half since our fridge is already swimming in leftovers.

You’ll Need:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika (or more, to taste)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon cooking oil
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped fresh white mushrooms (you could increase this somewhat, just make sure to decrease onion and/or pepper accordingly)
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped red or green pepper
  • 2 teaspoons al-purpose flour
  • Garlic powder. Italian seasoning (I substituted La Grille Lemon and Fine Herbs seasoning), salt, and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup Ricotta
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 cups milk
  • Italian seasoning (this time I substituted oregano), salt, and pepper to taste

Mix flour, paprika, and salt.  Beat first amount of eggs together with water and olive oil.  Add to flour mixture, and knead until dough forms a ball.  Cover with plastic wrap and let stand 30 minutes.  During this time, prepare the filling.  Fry mushrooms and onions in cooking oil 5-10 minutes until onion is translucent.  Add peppers, second amount of flour, and spices and cook an additional 3-5 minutes.  Mix in the Ricotta and let stand.  Once the pasta dough is ready to roll out, divide in half and quickly roll both halves into 16 x 12 inch rectangles (or some approximation thereof) on a lightly floured surface.  Lift dough and sprinkle more flour on work surface to prevent sticking.  Then let stand 10 minutes, sprinkle dough with flour, turn it over, and let stand 10 minutes more.  Cut both sheets of dough into 2 x 2 inch squares (I don’t always have the steadiest hand, so I placed the sheets one on top of the other to cut them, to make sure I always had two squares exactly the same size.)  Place ~1 teaspoon filling on half the squares, brush the edges of the squares with beaten egg, and cover with remaining squares.  Pinch edges to seal tightly and squeeze out excess air.  To cook those ravioli, set some salted water (about 3 litres) boiling in a large pot.  Once it has boiled, cook the ravioli in it for 5 to 8 minutes (depending on the size of the pot, you’ll want to do this in 2-3 batches).  Remove the ravioli with a slotted spoon and place in a sieve to drain.  Meanwhile, melt butter in a small saucepan, mix in flour, add milk and spices, and stir until thickened.  This makes a cream sauce to go with your ravioli.
Et voila.  It’s not a quick meal to prepare, but if you have the time it’s not terribly difficult.

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