Homemade Ricotta & Spinach Filled Ravioli
Ravioli the Maremma way - Maremma is a gorgeous, rugged coastal region between Tuscany and Lazio on the Thirrenian Sea. This eclectic dish has all the elements of the vigorous and varied character of old Tuscany. If you can buy good-quality fresh pasta near you, get the tortelli (large ravioli) filled with ricotta and spinach—then all that’s left for you to do is prepare the sauce.
- 3/4 cup DeLallo Whole-Milk Ricotta
- 1/2 pound fresh spinach, chopped
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano
- A pinch freshly grated nutmeg
- 3 tablespoons DeLallo Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1 chopped shallot
- 4 ounces lean ground veal
- 4 ounces lean ground pork
- 4 ounces sweet Italian sausage
- 1/2 cup red wine
- 1/2 cup beef or chicken broth
- 1 (28-ounce) can DeLallo Imported Crushed Tomatoes
- A pinch of fresh sage, rosemary and 2 bay leaves
- Salt and pepper
In a large bowl, combine the spinach, ricotta, one egg, half of the Parmigiano, some grated nutmeg, salt and pepper. Mix well.
Heat a skillet on a low; add the olive oil and then the shallot. Stir for 2 minutes, then add the herbs, meat and sausage—breaking up the sausage with a wooden spoon. Raise the flame to medium-high and cook for 5 minutes, or until meat is cooked through. Add the wine and season with salt and pepper. Cover and continue to cook on a low flame. Add broth to keep the mixture moist. Cook for 1 1/2 hours, stirring often. Add the crushed tomatoes and continue to simmer for another 30 minutes.
If you are making your own fresh filled pasta, roll out your dough fairly thinly, and using a dough-cutter wheel, cut two long rectangular strips of equal size, a little more than 3 inches wide. (Keep the rest of the dough covered with plastic wrap or a damp kitchen towel.) Dab a generous amount of filling every 2 to 3 inches along the dough. Place the other sheet on top and press it lightly all along the edges. Using the wheel cutter, first trim off the four sides of the rectangle; then cut out each square to form the tortelli. Seal each one well with your fingers. Lay them on a tray with some semolina flour on the bottom to avoid sticking.
Continue this procedure, preparing as many tortelli as you can, balancing the amount of filling with the remaining dough
In a large pot, bring a gallon of water to boil; add a half handful of salt and then add the tortelli one by one. Stir them very gently and cook for 8 minutes. Drain them with a colander or a sieve and then place them in a warm pasta bowl, alternating them with the hot meat sauce, sprinkled with Parmigiano. Be sure to offer more Parmigiano on the side.
Note: Since the tortelli are rather large and filling, figure on serving 6 or 7 per person.
* Picture is same filling, but made into a mezzaluna shape.