Sunday, March 20, 2016

How to make Homemade Ravioli

 Meat, Cheese, Spinach a la my Nana-Anna Ordille Ortenzi.
Nana's family came from Gesso, Messina, Sicily, Italy in the 1860's. My PopPop, Eugenio Ortenzi, emigrated from Canzano, Teramo , Abruzzi, Italy in 1914.  Sicilians typically make a Cheese Ravioli. This is what my Great Grandmother, Concetta Giatto Ordille, made as her ravioli- A round ravioli. She used a cup/glass and cut round pieces of dough, 1 for the bottom and 1 for the top, add stuffing to center (2 tbs+/-), top with second round and fork it all the way around.

My Nana made hers small and rectangular stuffed with a combo of meatm cheese and spinach. We think it was a combo of the Abruzzi/Sicilian raviolis. Here is how we make them.  This is a video from Mario Batali on how to make dough.    3 cups flour 5 eggs.
He used a fork and I use my fingers! 
He wrapped dough in plastic, I use a bowl.
(can go on line for additional how to videos on 
using a pasta machine, making dough etc)

 I do not refrigerate my dough. Once I have the dough ball ready, I put in on a lightly floured surface and cover with a bowl like my Nana did. Rest 20-30 min. I cut it in 1/2 then cut it into 1/4ths. Repeat with the other half once you are done with the first half.. You don't want to dry out your dough. Keep covered and take out 1 piece at a time. flour it and with your pasta machine, you are going to knead the dough. On the #1 setting,  Working with the first piece (keep remaining pieces covered), flatten it into a rectangle shape. Starting with one of the shorter sides of the rectangle, feed it through the rollers. Lightly flour each side each time thru, folding it into it self making it a rectangle. Run thru on #1 5-6 times, making it a rectangle. 
Then put thru 1x on #2, #3, #4 settings
The Stuffing...
MEAT, CHEESE, SPINACH-- 1/2 lb of ground meat or meatloaf mix, 2 eggs, 8 oz whole milk ricotta, 8 oz of mozzarella, 1/2 cup grated Parmesan, 1/4 cup parsley, salt and pepper. Mix well (again I get in there and use my hands, squishing it between my fingers!)
CHEESE--- 1 eggs, 8 oz whole milk ricotta, 1/2 cup grated Parmesan, 1/4 cup parsley, salt and pepper. Mix well
 Lay out the rectangle and add the stuffing as shown below

 Fold over the dough, making little pockets as demonstrated in this photo---

Cut as in this next photo----------------------------------------------------
 Fork the edges to seal the dough pockets, using flour on the fork to keep from sticking. Be careful to not prick/gouge the dough or it will fall apart when cooked.
 Now you can do 1 of 2 things, place ravioli on a floured baking tray. Fill up tray with out the ravioli touching. Stick in the freezer. When Frozen, put in a ziplock to cook later. see below.(will need to cook a little longer if not thaw out to cook.)

OR  Lay on a floured surface. I use kitchen towels laid out, flour the towels, then lay out the ravioli with out touching.  Bring a big pot of water to brisk boil. Drop in 10-12 ravioli at a time. They will float to the top. Cook 5-6 min and taste one to see if dough is tender. Get a tray and ladle some spaghetti sauce on the bottom to lightly cover. Gently use a large slotted spoon and place on the sauce. Top with more sauce and Grated Parmesan. GRATE IT YOURSELF. DO NO BUY IT IN A BOX! I will haunt you if you do.! You can buy freshly grated parm from your deli.

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