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Eats & Drinks | National Ravioli Day: Basic Cheese Ravioli

By Leslie Gayle

Happy National Ravioli Day! This recipe is very basic, but still so much better than your standard frozen or “fresh” ravioli from the grocery store. I use a very basic pasta recipe that can be used for spaghetti or fettuccine. It is easiest to use a pasta machine to get a thin sheet of pasta, but a strong arm and rolling pin will work as well.

I’m still perfecting a method of pasta assembly that works for me. My final product are by no means pretty. But my family prefers them. Using a ravioli mold is probably much easier than my method. So if you have one, use it.

Ingredients:

Filling

  • 1 pound of ricotta cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup parmesan cheese
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder (optional)
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon of black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice

Pasta

  • 1 3/4 cups flour
  • 2 extra large eggs (3 large eggs)

Directions:

Mixed together all ingredients for the filling and set side.

Using a mixer or by hand, mix together flour and eggs. If mixture is too dry to form a ball, add a little water. If mixture is too sticky to roll through a pasta machine or rolling pin, add a little flour. If mixing with a machine, make sure to knead the dough a few times to make sure it is evenly moist.

Divide pasta into 4 balls. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and let it rest for 20 minutes. Flatten each ball and run through a pasta machine several times. Have the pasta press on the thickest setting on the first pass through, getting progressively thinner with each press. I take my sheets to the second to last setting. You want a long, narrow sheet. Make sure each sheet is at least 3 inches wide. (If you don’t have a pasta machine, roll pasta sheet out with a rolling pin.) Set each sheet aside onto a lightly floured surface.

Overlap two sheets on top of each other and cut the edges for two uniform rectangles. Keep the excess dough. Repeat with last two sheets. Unfold the sheets.

At this point you can either cut the rectangle into squares, or work with the whole sheet. I prefer to cut the sheet into squares. My daughter prefers to work with the whole sheet.

For either method, place teaspoons of the filling on the pasta. Paint water along the edges of each ravioli with your finger. Place the second pasta sheet on top and seal, working gently at first so none of the filling is pushed out. Work from the outside in, pushing the air out of the center. I usually stretch the top piece of pasta with my hands, to ensure it covers the filling. Set each ravioli on a lightly floured surface to prevent sticking.

After all the pastas are sealed, trim excessive edges with a knife or pasta cutter. Then rework all the excess dough to create additional sheets.

This makes about 30 raviolis.

Don’t worry about the raviolis drying out. They can be made earlier in the day or cooked right away.

To cook, fill a large stock pot with water and bring to boil. Make sure not to crowd the pasta. Reduce the heat if the boil is strong. You don’t want to damage delicate raviolis. Cook until the raviolis all float, anywhere from 3 minutes to 10 minutes, depending on how long they were allowed to dry.

Serve immediately with your favorite pasta sauce.

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Leslie Gayle

Leslie is a one time CPA, wife and mom of twins. She’s an over thinker who loves karate, thunder, and travel. Her sweatpants are yoga pants and she takes her coffee with milk.

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