Sunday, November 12, 2006

Chef Boy O' Boy

I've mentioned that my Thanksgiving this year will be course based...tastings, more than courses. Well, the first tasting is completed and ready! I want to spend time with my guests, so I'm going to get as much done as I can in the days leading up to Thanksgiving.

The first tasting course will be...

Drum Roll Please!!!

Pumpkin Ravioli with Hazelnut Cream Sauce

These was my first time making ravioli. It's a bit tedious and I might not do it again, but it's not to difficult...just time consuming...and that's really all in the assembly.

To start, make 2 batches of basic pasta dough.

Let that rest for a few hours.

Time to make the filling.

You'll need 4 cups cubed pumpkin and 2 large carrots, peeled and sliced. Put all into a large kettle and just cover with water. Simmer until tender. Drain and put back in the kettle to let the heat chase away the last bit of moisture.

Add the tender veg to your food processor with 2 tsp ground coriander, 1 tsp ground nutmeg, 1/2 tsp ground allspice, a healthy pinch of salt and a few grinds of black pepper. Whiz until baby food smooth. Taste for seasoning, adjust as necessary.

Meanwhile, in your kettle you rinsed out, start 4 TB butter and 2 medium onions, finely diced over medium heat. Slowly saute until the onions are tender. Add 2 cloves garlic, minced. Cook for another minute. Turn off heat.

Stir in your whizzed veg. As it cools, stir in 2 TB pure maple syrup, 1 cup grated parmesan. And when it's cool, 1 beaten egg.

And now it's time to assemble your raviolis. Roll your pasta dough out flat. My machine does to 6 and I rolled the dough to 6.

When you have a flat sheet of dough, add 1 tsp dollops of filling to the dough. Lightly brush a light layer of water around the filling. Gently lay another sheet of dough top of the first. Carefully press any air out and apply a nice bit of pressure to seal the layers.

And now for the sauce.

Toast 1 cup of hazelnuts in a 400 degree oven for 10-12 minutes.

In a medium skillet over medium heat, melt 3 TB butter until just sizzling. Add in 1 clove of minced garlic and 1 pinch of cayenne pepper. Cook for about a minute, but don't burn or brown the garlic. Add 2 cups of heavy whipping cream, stir all to incorporate. Simmer until slightly thickened and the sauce coats the back of a spoon. Toss in 1/2 of the hazelnuts and a few grinds of white pepper and a pinch of salt. Stir in 1/4 cup of grated parmesan cheese. Keep warm.

Boil the ravioli until done...just a few minutes...fresh pasta cooks really quickly. Drain and plate. Spoon over the warm sauce, garnish with a bit more grated cheese and remaining nuts.

These were the first ones I made. And they were good. I actually didn't make the full amount of sauce because we used too much cream last night. But it's ok. You don't want the raviolis to drown in sauce, but a nice coating is good. And the filling...that's some good filling!

I was able to make 22 raviolis the way I did this. We had few each tonight for dinner. I have the rest in the freezer for thanksgiving day. I know I wasted a lot of dough, being my first time making these guys. I still have about 1/2 of the filling as well. I might try to make more of these next weekend to have in the freezer for the future. Mmmmmm!


Lady Brandenburg said...

Wow - very impressive!

Sean Carter said...

This sounds so delicious....and the photos makes me drool!!!! I really liked your stuff...and hey do drop by my Thanksgiving Blog sometime and find out more such interesting stuff on Thanksgiving....well have a great time!!!

DC Food Blog said...

That is pretty kickin'

Dancer in DC said...

It was really very delicious, but didn't make you feel TOO full, which is great.

Barbara (Biscuit Girl) said...

That looks incredibly good! Can't wait to see what else you're gonna cook.

Jon said...

Scott, I love your blog. Homemade pumpkin ravioli? Nice.