tirsdag den 1. juni 2010

Italy food recipe pasta with spinach and ricotta

Tortelloni di spinaci e ricotta
Several legends recount the medieval origin of tortellini shaped pasta, and most of them focus on the similarity between the stuffed dough and the navel of a beautiful woman. A sweet tale on a fascinating sight and even more appealing dish, especially when prepared by a Bolognese nonna and served in a strong but clear brodo broth.

I find broth making too much toil and trouble and concentrate instead on tortellini – or tortelloni as the bigger, lazier version is called. Even without the soup this pasta become really good when filled with a cream of spinach and ricotta and served with melted butter and crispy fried salvia leaves.

Serves 4
For the pasta:
4 dl of Italian flour
2 dl of tap water

For the filling
150 g fresh ricotta
100 g fresh spinach
1 dl grated parmesan
1 tsp grated nutmeg

Make a volcano of flour on a clean table. Pour a little more than half the water in the middle of the mount and use a fork to stir it with the flour. Add more water gradually, till you have a tough dough. Use the heal of your hand for kneading, when the fork is no longer useful. Keep kneading for at least 10 minutes or use a pasta machine.

Run the dough through the pasta machine once. If the edges are frayed, add more water, and if the dough seems sticky, add more flour. Roll the pasta through the machine at least ten times at max width (to make up for ten minutes kneading).

Decrease the width of the pasta machine gradually, one step at a time. Cut the pasta out in circles.

Leave the pasta on wire rack covered by a clean tea towel.

Rinse the fresh spinac, and put it is a casserole with the water that clings to the leaves. Heat the spinach for a few minutes until the leaves have collapsed. Let the spinach cool, before you wring out excess water, and bleen spinach with ricotta with grated parmesan and nutmeg.

Put the mixture in a plastic bag, cut off one corner, and place a top of filling one half of the pasta cicles. Fold the other half of pasta over the filling, fold the edge upwards and unite the ends of each semi-circle to make an imitation navel.

Fill a large pan with water and bring it to the boil. Add 1-2 tbsp salt. Boil the ravioli 3-4 minutes until they are al dente. Drain and place in a warm service dish with a dripping of smelted salvia butter.

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