Friends, I love pasta…in fact everyone in the Suziwong family loves pasta and ravioli is HIGH on the list of best loved pastas. This week I made ravioli stuffed with marinated goats cheese, prosciutto and fresh basil and served it with a very simple tomato based sauce.
My basic pasta recipe is from Jamie Oliver’s first cookbook: The Naked Chef. I’ve been using this basic recipe since 2000-2002 when we lived in Melbourne and I bought the book. It’s never failed me and I haven’t bothered to change recipes.
Basic Egg Pasta Dough
100g Tippo OO flour
1 fresh egg
Seriously, its’ that simple. And egg for every 100g of Tippo OO flour. Mix it until it forms a dough and then knead until it’s silky and elastic. I’m lazy so i mix and knead it in the bench top mixer with the dough hook. I then use the rolling process to get a really lovely stretchy pasta dough. I don’t have any pictures of making the pasta or during the stuffing process; just of the ravioli on the drying rack. For two and a half trays of ravioli, I used 500g of flour and 5 eggs. If the mixture doesn’t bind, add an extra egg.
You can stuff pasta with just about anything that tickles your taste buds: I stuffed this with prosciutto, fresh basil and marinated goats cheese. My next batch will be a 5 cheese mix.
I use a ravioli mould to make the ravioli; i have used individual ravioli stamps and a ravioli maker that attaches to a pasta machine with varying levels of success. The mould I now use is a Davis and Waddel model exactly like this Gefu model from Peter’s of Kensington.
Image courtesy of Peter’s of Kensington
Use a fine semolina flour when making rolled pasta; it helps the pasta from sticking to the rollers and moulds…it also stops the pasta from sticking together when on a drying rack. My three drying racks stack on top of each other; you can see them two pics above. They are fabulous; they fit into the fridge and all i have to do is cover the pasta with a tea towel until i’m ready to cook. I bought them, along with my dough board from an Italian kitchenware importer. I use the dough board lots; it’s especially fabulous when making bread because it sits on the end of my kitchen table where I prep quite a lot because my kitchen is devoid of a lot of prep space.
The basic tomato pasta sauce is actually a pizzaiola sauce from Maxine Clarke’s book: Pizza, Calzone and Focaccia. It’s a fabulous pizzaiola sauce and an equally fabulous pasta sauce.
8 tbsp olive oil
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 tsp dried oregano
2 x 400g tins of chopped tomatoes drained and juice reserved or 800g fresh tomatoes halved and cored.
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Maxine’s recipe says to heat the oil to almost smoke point and then add the garlic, oregano and tomato including the juice if using tinned. Cook over a fierce heat for 5-8 minutes or until the sauce is thick and glossy. Then pass the sauce through a food mill/mouli/auger juicer to remove the seeds and skin.
I am a little sloppy in following the recipe. For a pasta sauce I use 2kg of ripe fresh tomatoes and i don’t core them. I crush a whole pod of garlic and if it’s a small pod, i’ll use two and I throw in a handful of dried oregano. I cook it using Maxine’s instructions and instead of using a mouli, I use my auger juicer. The dogs get the tiny amount of pulp that is left over from the juicer…and I do mean a tiny amount; the Oscar auger juicer is brilliant. Mr Suziwong’s sister, La-La, gifted us one quite a few years ago now; she didn’t tell us – we came home to a rather large delivery at the front patio. And I can tell you, it is still well used and well loved. When La-La gifted us the Oscar juicer, they were incredibly expensive – they are about half the price these days. So if you’re looking for a really good auger juicer, i’m happy to recommend it.
This is the sauce prior to straining – I didn’t have any oregano so this time, there’s none added. I cook the sauce in my very large cast iron wok from Staub.
And below is the sauce after straining: it’s smooth and silky.
I tossed the al dente ravioli in the warmed sauce along with a chopped bunch of fresh basil…we are a basil loving family; a tablespoon or two would never do!
I served my mine with a mix of finely grated parmesan and pecorino cheeses.