Ravioli Redemption

I’ve been on a bit of a losing streak. My Pan-Asian cuisine and pot pie weren’t in-editable, but they were runny or odd tasting or just a little off. My humus crashed and burned and my spirits were low. But instead of giving into my favorite forfeit, La Madeline’s French Restaurant, I persevered. Lent continues and I made Ricotta Mushroom Ravioli.

I had frozen the left over pasta dough from Lasagna and “thawed” it out to use for ravioli. Note to self, when using frozen dough, bring it to room temperature or warmer before trying to do anything with it. If the dough is too cold it will crumble and make you grumble!

Roll out Dough and Cut into Circles
My Ravioli Circles

A ravioli can be made two ways–the traditional round sandwich where the filling is placed between two pieces of pasta crimped together, or the I-don’t-have-enough-dough fold over where the filling is placed below center of a single round pasta circle and the circle is folded over on its self. I squeezed my left over dough through the pasta machine down to about a 2 to make it stretch enough to make traditional looking ravioli.

I mixed up 7.5 ounces of ricotta cheese (1/2 a container) and about half a pint of baby bell mushrooms to make the filling. To assemble, I placed circle on my cutting board, this would be my bottom circle. Using the two spoon drop method, I put about half a tablespoon of filling in the middle careful to leave enough exposed outer crust. I covered this with another circle. Using a wet fork, I crimped down the edges.

Bottom Circle
Filling in the Middle

A tip I learned when working with fresh pasta dough: When making ravioli or tortiolini (something where you make the pasta then set it aside until all are made) you can put a little flour on the noodles or in the bowl you’re putting them in to keep all the noodles from sticking to each other.

I let the ravioli sit while I made an alfredo sauce. I had tried alfredo sauce about a year and a half ago. I used buttermilk and two types of cheeses. It was amazing. But it was so heavy that the thought of making it again made my heart hurt. I found another lighter recipe instead. I started by sauteing garlic and fresh parsley. I saw on America’s Test Kitchen that some spices and herbs are oil solvent so they actually don’t give off their sent unless they come in direct contact with hot oil. I don’t know if parsley is one of these, but I tried anyways. While that was cooking down, I blended milk, cream cheese and parmesan cheese. I say I blended, I used my hand mixer since my blender was bested by a chickpea. This was a great tip, it kept the cheeses from lumping up and made the mixture smooth and creamy. Once the parsley was ready, I added the cheese mixture and heated through. It thickened up in the heat, but not as much as spackle.

While the sauce was heating together, I boiled the ravioli. since it was fresh pasta it took less than 5 mins for the ravioli to float to the top. The alfredo sauce poured over the ravioli it was delicious! Next time I’ll try adding shrimp or spinach.

Mushroom Ravioli with Parsley Alfredo Sauce

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