Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Pasta Experiment on a Snow Day

I've been talking about making fresh pasta for so long that Tom gives me grief about it every time I bring it up. He gave me a pasta machine for Christmas --oh, somewhere between 7 and 10 years ago. Well, now it's officially been used, and it will go back in the closet to collect dust again. Molto Mario I am not!

Won Ton wrappers are so much easier to use for making ravioli. But it was fun making a mess, I'll admit. And the fillings and sauce I made are recipes worth keeping.

We had another snowstorm today, so I used what I had at home instead of venturing out. I like the challenge of creating something from what's in the fridge and the pantry.

The pasta dough is simple to make but requires a Cuisinart which I rarely use these days.

Egg Pasta
4 eggs
2 cups flour plus 1/2 cup
2 tsp. olive oil

Per the Williams -Sonoma cookbook on pasta I used, whiz it until it forms a ball, stopping every 10 pulses to add 1 Tbsp. of flour at a time until it isn't sticky. Knead it on a floured surface for 1 to 1 minutes then form it into a ball. Put it under a bowl and let it rest for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, I cobbled together a sauce from things I had.

Chunky Tomato Sauce

1 onion chopped
1 large or 2 small carrots chopped
1 tsp. celery seed (I didn't have any fresh celery)
1 small can diced tomatoes with Italian flavors (basil, garlic, etc.)
1 large can crushed tomatoes with Italian flavors

Saute onion and carrots until translucent, add celery seed and continue to cook until barely beginning to brown. Add tomatoes and simmer until thickened, about 30 minutes.

The fillings were made using leftovers and adapting Williams-Sonoma recipes.

Chicken Ravioli Filling

1 lb. cooked chicken (I used leftover rotisserie chicken and a can of chicken)
1/2 c. grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
1 large egg
2 T. minced fresh parsley ( I used dry)
1 t. grated lemon zest
1 t. kosher salt
1/4 t. freshly grated nutmeg
1/8 t. freshly ground pepper

Pulse the chicken only until it is minced. Add the rest of the ingredients and pulse until just combined. Turn into a bowl and cool in the fridge for 1 hour before using.

Mushroom Ravioli Filling

Olive oil for sauteing
1 lb cleaned mushrooms, sliced ( I used shitake, baby bella, porcini but white are fine)
1 t. fresh thyme ( I used dry)
1 t. kosher salt
1/8 t. freshly ground pepper
1/2 cup ricotta cheese
1/2 c. grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
1 large egg yolk

Saute the mushrooms and add the thyme and salt and pepper until juices evaporate and they are golden brown, approximately 10 minutes. Let cool slightly.

Scrape the mixture into a food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Add the rest of the ingredients and pulse just until blended. Turn into a bowl and chill for at least an hour.

1 comment:

  1. As my grandmother would have said "Hey, whats the matter you? Getta your hands dirty and mix the dough with them".

    You need to knead the dough for 10 minutes. It is ready when you press a finger into the dough and it springs back and has good elasticity...It's a great 10 minute work out for your arms!