Solid families build and hold on to tradition.
Becky Low shares her recipe for homemade ravioli.
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
4 large eggs
2 teaspoons olive oil
1-2 tablespoons minced fresh herbs, optional (thyme, rosemary, basil)
1 ½ cups Ricotta cheese
1 ½ cups shredded Mozzarella cheese
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 eggs, beaten
salt and pepper to taste (⅛-teaspoon each)
1-3 teaspoons minced fresh herbs, optional (thyme, rosemary, basil)
⅛-¼ teaspoon garlic powder, optional
Place flour on clean counter and make a well in center with fingers. Drop remaining dough ingredients in center of well. Using a fork whisk eggs, gradually beating in more and more of the flour from the sides of the well. Work in enough more flour to make a firm dough, no longer sticky to handle, still soft enough to knead. (NOTE: If dough becomes too stiff, spritz the surface with water and continue to knead to create desired consistency). Knead dough until smooth (5-10 minutes). Wrap dough in plastic wrap, refrigerate and allow to rest for 30 minutes, up to 3 hours.
Combine all “filling ingredients” and mix well. Filling may be prepared ahead of time and refrigerated until ready to use.
Divide dough in fourths, work with ¼ dough at a time; rewrap remaining dough while not in use. (Ravioli is best made with a pasta machine but you may hand roll very thin on a floured surface. It’s thin enough when you can see your hand behind the dough). Flatten dough into a disk. Using the widest setting on a pasta machine (usually 1 or 0), run the dough through the machine 3-4 times. (NOTE: if dough is a bit tacky, dust the surface with flour.) Fold dough into thirds, feed open side of dough through pasta machine 2 or 3 more times, fold in thirds again and repeat. Lower the setting on pasta machine one step and run dough through twice; continue to run the dough through the machine, lowering the setting 1 step at a time until you reach the narrowest setting or until you can see your hand behind the pasta. While feeding dough into pasta machine, hold the dough with the flat of your hand allowing it to drop into the machine (not pulled through). Lay pasta sheet on lightly floured surface or parchment paper. Place 1 to 1 ½ teaspoons filling 1-inch apart on half the pasta sheet. Dip finger in water and dampen the pasta sheet around the filling dollops. Fold second half of the pasta sheet over filling dollops and gently press to seal edges around filling. Cut into squares using a sharp knife or pastry cutter. Allow ravioli to dry 20-30 minutes; or, freeze for later cooking (NOTE: freeze ravioli flat, in a single layer, on parchment covered baking pan, then remove from pan and stack in airtight freezer container for up to 2 months). Repeat with remaining dough and filling.
Bring 6-8 quarts of water to a full boil, gently drop ravioli into boiling water, cook 3-5 minutes or until ravioli floats to the top and are tender. If cooking from frozen state, add additional 30-60 seconds on to cooking time. Drain. Serve plain, sprinkled with Parmesan cheese, drizzled with olive oil, covered with a pink sauce (or tomato cream sauce – see quick recipe below), or with an Alfredo sauce.
Recipe was inspired by Kristi Spence in her blog post “Homemade Ravioli – An Italian Easter Tradition.” http://thecowlocale.com/2015/04/05/homemade-ravioli-an-italian-easter-tradition/Kristi can purchase ravioli from the grocery store, but making it from scratch brings back fond memories of her grandma Olga. This was a tradition Kristi shared with grandma and one she wants to continue with her small family. Cooking with family is more than the food prepared – the food is quickly eaten – the memories last forever.
For those of us who do not have an Italian grandma we can start a new memory/tradition and prepare a very tasty do-it-yourself comfort food with easy to make ravioli. Recipe makes approximately 4 dozen raviolis.
Quick Pink Sauce Recipe:
1 can (14-oz) diced tomatoes with basil and oregano
1 can (24-oz) pasta sauce of choice (4 ½ cups)
½-1 cup cream
Drain obvious liquid from can of tomatoes, combine with pasta sauce and heat to a boil. Remove from heat and stir in cream.
Becky Low is with The Dairy Council of Utah/Nevada. For delicious dairy recipes and nutrition information go to www.dairycouncilutnv.com or Facebook www.facebook.com/DairyUTNV . For nutrition research go to www.nationaldairycouncil.org