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Ricotta and Spinach Ravioli in Tomato Sauce

  • Author: Nicoletta
  • Yield: about 30 ravioli 1x
  • Category: Pasta, Vegetarian
  • Method: Homemade
  • Cuisine: Italian

Description

A classic pasta dish that we typically make for a Sunday lunch. Tender, beautiful, homemade noodles, stuffed with a creamy mixture of ricotta and spinach. Served with a simple basil tomato sauce and topped with grated Parmigiano, these ravioli will transport you to Italy at your first bite.


Ingredients

Ravioli dough

  • 2 large eggs
  • 200 g flour 00
  • a few drops of water if necessary

Ricotta and Spinach Filling

  • 250 g ricotta, drained
  • 100 g boiled and squeezed spinach
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/4 grated nutmeg

Tomato Sauce

  • 2 tablespoons e.v.o. oil
  • 1 clove garlic, whole, pressed
  • 1/2 small onion, minced
  • 1 small carrot, chopped
  • 1 can San Marzano tomatoes, puréed
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 23 basil leaves
  • Parmigiano Reggiano (for topping)

Instructions

Dough:

  1. On the wood board, pour the flour, make a hole in the center and add the eggs. Beat the eggs with a fork and start incorporating a little flour.
  2. Keep beating the eggs incorporating more of the inner edge of the flour ‘wall’ until the flour starts absorbing the eggs.
  3. Once the eggs are blended in the flour, and you have somewhat of a raggedy dough, start working it. Work the dough with your fingertips, first to release some moisture. Add a few drops of water if necessary.
  4. Then, knead vigorously for a few minutes using your whole hand, folding and turning.
  5. As soon as the dough is smooth, shape it into a ball, cover it with a cloth or a bowl, or wrap it in plastic, and let it rest  for 30 minutes. The gluten will relax and you will have a more elastic dough.
  6. While the dough is resting, prepare the filling.

Filling:

  1. Wash and boil the spinach until tender. Then, squeeze them very well and chop them fine.
  2. In a bowl add the ricotta and the chopped spinach. Adjust with a little salt, and grated the nutmeg. Mix everything until creamy and smooth and set aside.

Making Ravioli

  1. After the resting time, divide the dough into four parts. Take a piece of dough, and leave the others covered so they do not dry out.
  2. Lightly flatten the piece of dough with your hands, pressing it on the floured work surface. Then, turning the handle of the pasta machine, start rolling it, going from the lowest number on the wheel (1) that is the widest roller thickness of the pasta machine, gradually going up one number, until you have a rather thin pasta sheet (5).  Pass the sheet a couple of times through the rollers at each number. Since ravioli are made with two overlapping pasta sheets, it is better to have a thin dough.
  3. When the pasta sheet is at the desired thickness, cut it in half using a knife. One one half add 1 teaspoon of filling, leaving a space of about 2 fingers in between.
  4. Cover with the other half sheet and with your fingers press the dough around the filling to remove as much air as possible. Do not let the pasta sheet dries out. It is important to make the ravioli one sheet at a time, as soon as they are rolled out.
  5. Using a corrugated wheel (or a ravioli cutter), cut in between the filling and along the top and bottom to create the ravioli. Reuse the scraps to make more pasta sheets.
  6. As soon as you have the finished ravioli, it is important to lay them on a well floured surface so they won’t stick at the bottom.
  7. Let the ravioli dry a little and, if you haven’t made your sauce yet, now it’s the time.

Tomato sauce

  1. In a medium pot over low/medium heat, add the olive oil, the minced onion, the chopped carrot, and garlic clove. Cook until golden, then add the tomato sauce.
  2. Adjust with salt and pepper, and add the basil leaves.
  3. Let cook on low for about 30 minutes or until desired thickness, stirring every now and then. Remove garlic whole.

Cooking Ravioli and Plating:

  1. In a large pot of salted boiling water, place ravioli in delicately. Wait till the ravioli come to the surface, then cook for about 2 minutes longer, about 7-8 minutes total.
  2. Take out of water using a slotted spoon and place in a big bowl with some tomato sauce at the bottom. Add more sauce on top, stir gently, then add abundant grated Parmigiano.
  3. Place 5-6 ravioli onto a plate and dress with some more sauce and Parmigiano.
    Ready to serve!
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