Are there any Food Network fans out there? Before we cut our cable, we used to religiously watch Alton Brown's Good Eats and the occasional Iron Chef. If you're not familiar with Alton Brown, he's definitely worth a look. Sadly, the show is no longer, but viewing previous episodes will entertain you (because he's a pretty funny guy) and also spark the analytical side of your brain when it comes to food. You get scientific descriptions, explanations, puppet shows and particle theories of matter; how fun is that?
And speaking of fun, who knew pasta was so easy to make? I didn't! My handmade raviolis could use some pretty-ing up, but wow were they delicious. On the next round, I'm going to use more filling and roll the pasta out a bit thinner, but keep all the ingredients the same. They're tasty, they're fun and the perfect comfort food.
- 3 cups of all purpose flour
- 2 eggs
- 1/4 cup of olive oil
- 1/2 cup of water
- 1/2 teaspoon of salt
1. Beat the eggs in a large mixing bowl. Add oil, water, and salt. Mix them together.
2. Add flour one cup at a time, mixing throughly. By the third cup you may need to knead the dough by hand.
3. Once the dough is to the correct consistency, wrap in plastic and chill for 1 -2 hours.
- 9 tablespoons butter
- 3 tablespoons minced shallots
- 1 cup roasted butternut squash puree
- Freshly ground white pepper
- 3 tablespoons heavy cream
- 3 tablespoons grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, plus 2 ounces
- Pinch nutmeg
- 1 can sliced black olives
- 1/2 cup pine nuts
- 4 tablespoons fresh cilantro
In a large sauté pan, over medium heat, melt 1 tablespoon of the butter. Add the shallots and sauté for 1 minute. Add the squash puree and cook until the mixture is slightly dry, about 2 to 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in the cream and continue to cook for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in 3 tablespoons cheese and nutmeg, to taste. Season with salt and pepper. Cool completely.
Using a pasta roller or a rolling pin, roll pasta dough into a thin sheet. You may need extra flour for dusting so the dough does not stick. Cut the pasta using a ravioli maker, stamp or press to create your favorite shape.
Place 2 teaspoons of the filling in the center of each pasta square. Moisten the edge around the filling with water and place the counterpart of your ravioli on top, encasing the filling. Press around the edges to ensure the two pieces adhere together.
Add the pasta to pot of boiling salted water. Cook until al dente, about 2 to 3 minutes or until the pasta floats and is pale in color. Remove the pasta from the water and drain well. Drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle black olives and pine nuts and combine well. Season the pasta with salt and pepper. Place some of the pasta in the center of each serving plate and garnish with fresh cilantro and remaining 2 ounces of grated cheese.