Homemade pasta seems like a daunting task, but it should be pretty easy for any cook — even the one you employ at home. I sound very non-chalant, but I only got the guts to do it myself after Farzana’s blog post on the Recipe Center recently. OK I lied — I’ve made homemade ravioli once before, and it was good. But this time was better, because I got the ratio of egg to flour correct.
I was making ravioli for my brother in law’s return, so I made a lot — generally, you should be able to make enough dough for 4 big eaters by mixing two cups of flour with 2 eggs, a teaspoon of salt, a 2 tablespoons of water and 2 of olive oil. I hand mixed the 5 ingredients together until it formed a ball. I let it rest for 20-30 minutes before proceeding, during which time I made the ravioli mixture.
In a skillet, I sautéed the shallots for 3 minutes in the olive oil, adding the garlic halfway through, then added the mushrooms, seasoned with salt and pepper, and continued to fry until the mixture was somewhat dry, about 3-4 more minutes. I took the mushroom mixture off the stove, and let it cool slightly.
In a large bowl, I grated the mozzarella and parmesan (and added some leftover blue cheese and some feta I had lying around for good measure), to which I added the mushroom mixture and mixed well, seasoning with salt and pepper.
Grabbing the dough, I tore off a palm sized piece and proceeded to roll it flat with a roller, ensuring that it was about twice as long as it was wide — almost a rectangular shape. I kept rolling until the dough was about 1-2 millimeters thick. I now had a squarish shape about 7 cm wide and — enough for 3 raviolis. I placed three dollops of the mushroom mixture onto the lower side of the dough rectangle, leaving enough space between each dollop, and then folded over the top layer of the dough on top of the side with the mushroom, and then pressed around the edges so that I formed three uncut raviolis. I pressed down on the edges gently but firmly so as to get rid of any major air pockets. Then I took a knife and cut in between each dollop so as to form 3 ravioli noodles. I then used the end of a fork to make a pattern around the edge of each noodle.
I proceeded to do the same with the rest of the dough and mixture, taking care to separate each ravioli layer with wax paper to prevent sticking.
Once the noodles were made, I brought a large pot of water to boil and started dropping the ravioli in — barely for 2-3 minutes. At this point I drained the ravioli in a colander, put them in a bowl, tossed with whatever pasta sauce I had lying around (I believe it was arrabbiata), garnished with the parsley, and served. Usually I would make my own pasta sauce, but in order to keep it simple, I just used store-bought this time around. I’m sure we’ll share a home-made pasta sauce recipe in the future!
For the Dough
2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Additional flour, for dusting
For the Filling
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 pound fresh wild mushrooms, minced
Salt and pepper
2 garlic cloves, minced fine
6 ounces chopped mozzarella
1/4 cup grated fresh Parmesan, plus extra for garnish
salt and pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, minced