Mention ravioli and many will conjure the horrendous tinned garbage of the 1980s and 90s in their mind’s eye. Thankfully times have moved on, our palates have matured and as a nation we have a greater interest in what we eat, where we get it from and how it is made.
Pasta is a great summer meal builder as it can be adapted to so many different dishes while retaining the lightness not to be too stodgy in hot weather. Here we look at Ravioli and show in simple steps that even a maladroit meal-time mess maker such as myself is capable of plating up a dish that confounds the rest of the family
150g plain flour
1 egg yolk
25g of dry white breadcrumbs
75g of chopped spinach
50g of sun dried tomatoes in olive oil, chopped. (If you only have dry, revitalise them as per packet instructions and reserve the liquid)
50g of freshly grated parmesan cheese
4 tbsp tomato puree
375 ml of cold water
2 tbsp flour
Prefer to work in metric? Need a weight or liquid conversion chart?
- Sift 150g of plain flour onto a clean kitchen top or large board. Make an indentation in the centre, add the egg yolk and enough water to form a stiff dough. Knead until smooth, then leave in a covered bowl for ten minutes.
- Meanwhile, you can continue with the filling. Mix the chopped spinach, parmesan, sun-dried tomatoes, bread crumbs and egg. Moisten with a dash of water until you have a dry paste. Season well.
- After ten minutes, pull out the dough and roll until it is paper thin. (This is where a pasta machine comes in handy, but for pasta types like ravioli, just roll it out with the rolling pin as best you can. It will still taste like only fresh pasta can!)
- Using a pastry knife, cut the rolled out dough into into 8cm (3 inch) strips. Now, to make the ravioli, start at the top of 1 strip. Leave a gap of 5 cm (2 inches) from the top edge of the pasta and put a teaspoon of the filling on the pasta strip. Fold the top of the pasta (where you left the gap) over the filling and pinch around the sides to seal it in. Slice the ravioli square off the strip with a sharp knife and put to one side. Continue this until all the pasta strips have been filled.
- When you are ready to eat, drop the ravioli in boiling water for 10 minutes and serve with a drizzle of olive oil, a green salad and a good bottle of wine.
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