Sunday, March 7, 2010
I've had a pasta maker for almost 4 years now - and it has never made it out of the box. It's always one of those things that I want to make, but when I'm hungry and looking for pasta, the dry stuff in the box always looks better at the time.
I was wrong. My first experience with ravioli making was messy, fun, and delicious. The dough was so soft, and just a little sticky, which proved challenging at times...well, mainly those times when I forgot to flour the dough and it stuck to itself.
I used 2 fillings for the ravioli's - the first was the exact same recipe I used for meatballs, the second was a cheese and mushroom filling that would have been much better if I had added the salt, instead of forgetting to put it in. I served it with my spicy marinara sauce, with just a touch of cream...and tons of parmesan.
Difficulty: Medium to hard
3 cups flour
3-4 T. water
1 t. salt
1 T. olive oil
I made my dough in a food processor - so for a food processor add the flour and salt, then add the eggs while the pulsing. Add the olive oil, then the water, 1 T. at a time, until the dough comes together. As soon as the dough comes together, remove from food processor, gently kneed, wrap tightly and place in refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
If you don't have a food processor - On your work surface, place the 3 c. flour and salt. Make a well in the center of the flour. Lightly beat the eggs and olive oil together, and place in the middle of the well. Slowly add flour from the center of the well, working outward, until your dough begins to form. Add water 1 T. at a time until the dough comes together. Gently kneed, wrap tightly, and place in refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
Remove dough from refrigerator and cut into 8 equal pieces. While working with one piece, keep the other 7 covered so they won't dry out. Begin with the pasta machine on setting 1, and work the pasta until it is on level 6 - that's as thin as you want for this dough.
Drop teaspoons of your filling equally spaced on one half of your dough. Brush the dough with water, so it will stick together, then gently fold over the other half of your dough. Gently press each ravioli, making sure no air remains in your ravioli's.
Bring a large pot of water to boil, add your ravioli's, and cook until they float, about 5 minutes. Remove with slotted spoon into your pasta sauce.
Meat Filling -I used the same recipe as I do for meatballs
Mushroom and cheese filling
1/4 pound each crimini and shitake mushrooms
1/4 c. dried porcini mushrooms
1 t. olive oil
1/4 c. parmesan cheese
1/3 c. ricotta cheese
1/2 t. salt
1/4 t. pepper
Finely chop mushrooms, and saute in the 1 t. olive oil. Let cool. Add remaining ingredients, and adjust salt and pepper to taste. About 2 t. of this filling is enough for ravioli.