REMEMBER: Anything that you make at home yourself is better than even the "healthiest" (processed) alternative at the store. KNOW YOUR FOOD! BE AWARE!
Let's make one thing clear...
This is a recipe for once you have begun maintaining your healthy lifestyle. This is not fat-free, low-carb or any of that. It's ravioli - so take it for what it is; but it is a healthier alternative to the highly processed frozen varieties & pre-made (supposedly) "fresh" refrigerated options at the store.
The best part is that KIDS LOVE IT! Child obesity is a major issue in this country & actually grabbing whole ingredients & cooking fresh, delicious food for them is the best way to help fight the obesity epidemic.
Lecture is over. You get it.
You can make the filling ahead of time, so I will tell you about that first.
Low-fat Ricotta Cheese - 1 cup
Grated Cheese (I used a mixture of parmesan, which the recipe called for, & mozzarella) - 3/4 cup
Egg - 1
Minced Fresh Basil - 1/2 cup
Salt - 1/2 tsp.
Pepper - to taste
Mix all the ingredients in a bowl. This can be refrigerated overnight.
Here is a book I have used while getting started making pastas. I have found it immensely helpful & easy to have around on the counter while I'm working.
On Page 22 is a recipe for Basic Semolina Pasta.
"This basic recipe is for any noodle product, as it contains egg."
I didn't have semolina flour, so I used (& have continued using) the bread-baking flour I had on hand. Once I even used all-purpose flour in a pinch & this always seems fine. You just have to be careful to follow the directions for the ingredients & expect that your texture will be off at first. You then slowly add water 1-2 tablespoons at a time until the consistency is right. Patience is key & practice will make you more able to feel when the dough is right.
Flour - 1 cup
Egg - 1
Olive Oil - 1 Tbsp.
Waiter (as needed) - 1 Tbsp.
NUTRITION INFO PER 1-CUP SERVING:
276 calories, 10.1g protein, 42.2g carbs, 7.3g fat, 21.1mg sodium
|After Mixing & Rolling Dough by Hand.|
ASSEMBLING THE RAVIOLI:
Working with a quarter of the dough at a time, roll the dough out using a pasta maker.
You'll want to roll it as thinly as possible, so use the last setting. I use a
When you're done rolling, you should have a long rectangle about 4 inches wide.
I used a ravioli press because they are inexpensive to buy & make ravioli the same size
for uniform results when cooking. I use a
Place small spoonfuls of filling (about a teaspoon) along the pasta,
just below the center of the pasta, leaving about 1 1/4 inch between.
I used my rolling pin to roll over the back & help the press come through the dough.
This assures that each ravioli is sealed tight & makes the ravioli much easier to separate.
Then you just flip them out of the press & separate with a pastry wheel.
Set the ravioli on a floured surface to dry for 30 minutes.
Flip them & let rest on the other side for another 30 minutes.
(This is just to make sure that the ravioli is sealed & lessens the chance of the pasta tearing while cooking. The first time I made them I didn't allow for this time & it turned out fine, probably because I made the pasta thicker than it needed to be. I didn't do this on purpose,
it is a common beginner's mistake.)
Continue with the rest of the dough, rolling out a quarter of the dough at a time.
At this point, you can refrigerate the ravioli on a lightly greased sheet, covered with plastic wrap, for several hours, or freeze them. If you opt to freeze them, make sure you freeze them in a manner that they don't lump together.
When you are ready to eat, bring a pot of water to a light boil. You don't want to cook ravioli at a rolling boil. This doesn't just go for homemade ravioli, but store-bought, as well.
Boil for 3-5 minutes, until cooked through.
Serve with your favorite tomato sauce & enjoy!
With much love & consideration,
~ Natalie ~