Advertisement // Yes! We made ravioli. F-I-N-A-L-L-Y!
I have been looking forward to that moment for a while now. I’ve been wanting to make them with my parents or brother. Whoever was available. But when everyone lives in a different city, it’s a little hard to find the perfect weekend for such a project.
Well, project might sound like quite a bit of work. Which actually, was not the case. However, we did spend a few hours making the pasta, but mainly because I had to squeeze in the photo shoot :) I mean, as much as I love quick recipes, honestly, this here is not the quickest one, as you can imagine. But let me tell you.. These ravioli are worth the time and effort.
Oh boy, I had almost forgotten how challenging it can be to cook and take pictures while there is more people involved than just me. Nevertheless, my parents did a great job, and were as patient as they could be.. Which is quite a big deal, when we end up eating lunch much later than usual.. :)
It was fun to make homemade pasta all together. While one took care of rolling the dough through the pasta machine, the other one took care of the rest. Everybody had his own task. Granted, it does make it a lot easier using a pasta maker. One of the reasons is that the dough is usually quite firm, which can turn into quite a workout using a rolling pin. As far as I can remember my family has always used a Marcato pasta maker. Whether it’s for making lasagne, tagliatelle or similar. Even as a little kid, I remember doing my part on those Sundays when we used to make homemade pasta. My mom was in charge of kneading the dough, while I was enjoying turning the handle :)
The bottom line is, this recipe passed the strict jury’s test. My brother, who joined us one day later, was blown away by the taste! Besides the very simple pumpkin-parmesan filling, and of course the delicious homemade pancetta, I’d say that the brown butter contributed in a fantastic way! Have you ever tried making brown butter? If not, you really need to try this! What initially might look like burned butter, is the best liquid butter you might have ever eaten! What makes it so wonderful is the nutty flavor that almost magically comes out..
- 200 gr / 7 oz flour
- 2 eggs
- 500 g / 1 lb pumpkin, roasted and mashed
- 1 sprig sage (or approx. 3-4 leaves per person)
- 2 tbsp pancetta (or bacon), chopped
- 2 full tbsp parmesan cheese, grated
- 4 tbsp butter
- olive oil
- a pinch of salt and pepper
- Preheat the oven to 160°C / 320°F.
- Clean the pumpkin and cut into large slices.
- Place them on a parchment paper covered baking sheet.
- Bake for about 30 minutes or until soft.
- Depending on the type of pumpkin you can leave the skin on, otherwise peel before you mash them.
- In a food processor mix the pumpkin with parmesan cheese until creamy. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
- In a large bowl combine flour and eggs.
- Add just a little water if the dough is too dry or hard.
- Knead until you get a relatively smooth and firm dough.
- Dust the counter with flour.
- Cut of a piece of dough and roll it through the pasta machine at its lowest (widest) setting. Fold the dough a few times times and repeat at the lowest setting about 2 more times, until the pasta gets a smooth and even look.
- Increase the setting to the next level. (Note: You don't necessarily have to go through each setting until you reach no. 6. You can also skip a few steps; i.e. from setting 1 to 3 and then to 5 or straight to 6).
- Keep rolling the dough through the pasta maker. But do not fold it again. As soon as the pasta rectangle gets too long, cut it in half.
- After reaching setting 6, place the thin dough on the floured counter.
- If you are using a ravioli cutter, pre-shape the ravioli by pressing it gently on the dough.This will help later on keeping the right distance between the ravioli, when placing the pumpkin filling on top.
- Place about 1 teaspoon of pumpkin filling on each circle or square.
- When done, cover with another thin layer of dough.
- Press gently with your fingers, shaping around each mound of filling, trying to remove any air pockets.
- Cut each pocket with a ravioli cutter (or with a knife or similar) set aside on a floured tray.
- Roast the chopped pancetta and sage leaves in a pan with a tiny bit of olive oil. Set aside.
- Meanwhile in a separate large pan melt the butter at medium to high heat. As soon as it turns into an airy foam, lower the heat to medium. When you see little brown bits dropping to the bottom of the pan, remove from the heat.
- Add the pancetta-sage mix to the butter.
- Bring water in a large sauce pan to a boil. Add a generous pinch of salt.
- Place the ravioli carefully into the boiling water and cook for about 10-12 minutes.
- Remove the ravioli with a large strainer and place immediately into the brown butter-pancetta-sage mix pan. Stir carefully.
- Serve with additional grated parmesan cheese if desired.
- Should you not have a pasta maker available, use a rolling pin instead. Make sure that the dough does not get to thin (or transparent), as it might break very easily when filling or cooking.