Beet Ravioli with Orange Poppy Seed Butter

November 19th, 2010 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 8

INGREDIENTS

2 large red beets, roasted and peeled, chopped fine
½ cup Ricotta cheese
1 tablespoon orange zest
Pasta sheets (Recipe on Ger-Nis site)
1 stick butter
2 medium shallots, chopped fine
1 tablespoon poppy seeds
1 tablespoon fresh orange juice
1 tablespoon white wine
1 teaspoon salt

PREPARATION

In a small bowl, combine beets, cheese, and orange zest. Season with salt, and set aside.

Using fresh pasta sheets cut into about 2 square inches, add 1 dollop of filling. Cover with another 2 inch pasta square. Using wet fingers, seal all sides of ravioli by pinching down.

Place raviolis in a large pot of salted boiling water. Boil for about 3 minutes, or until floating.
Strain and set aside.

In the meantime, in a medium sauté pan, melt butter and sauté shallots until translucent. Add poppy seeds, orange juice, and white wine and allow to cook down for about two minutes. Drizzle over cooked raviolis.

Eugene Sausage Pasta

November 19th, 2010 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 8

INGREDIENTS

Olive oil
6-8 cloves garlic, chopped fine
1 tablespoon dried fennel seeds
1-2 teaspoons dried red chili flakes
1 pound spicy Italian sausage
1 bunch fresh parsley, chopped fine (flat leaf)
2 teaspoons salt
1 small can tomato sauce, 6 ounces
1 cup black olives, pitted and sliced
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1 package (box) linguini, cooked, 16 ounces
Freshly grated parmesan
Black pepper


PREPARATION

In sauté pan, place olive oil, garlic,  place on medium heat. Add fennel seeds and chili flakes and cook about 30 -45 seconds. (This process enhances the flavor of the oil and adds to the flavor of the cooked sausage and sauce.) Add the sausage, making sure to take it out of the casing and break it up in small pieces. Continue to cook until brown, making sure to break apart and larger piece of meat. Once the sausage is browned and crumbly, add the parsley and the salt, stirring and cooking a few more minutes. Add the black olives, mix well.  Toss in tomato sauce, mix together well and continue to cook until all liquid is absorbed. The tomato  sauce will become tomato paste like and should be  sticking tightly to the meat.  Once the sauce is totally absorbed into the meat about 5 minutes approximately of stirring while keeping the burner on medium heat, reduce the temp to low and pour in the heavy cream. Mix together until all the cream is mixed in, turn the burner off.   Toss  the sauce together with cooked linguini. Season with salt to taste.

Freshly grated parmesan cheese and black pepper are a MUST on top!

Fresh Herb Pasta

November 19th, 2010 § 0 comments § permalink

Ingredients

3 cups all-purpose flour plus additional for dusting
4 large eggs, lightly beaten
½ cup (total) chopped fine, basil, parsley, tarragon, mint, marjoram, chives
1 teaspoon salt

Directions

To make dough in a processor:

Blend flour, egg, and salt in a food processor until mixture just begins to form a ball (dough should be firm and not sticky). Process dough for 15 seconds more to knead it. Transfer to a floured surface and let stand, covered for about 30 minutes for the dough to relax.

To make dough by hand:

Mound flour on a work surface, preferably wooden, and make a well in center. Add egg and salt. With a fork, gently beat eggs and water until combined. Gradually stir in enough flour to form a paste, pulling in flour closest to egg mixture and being careful not to make an opening in outer wall of well. Knead remaining flour into mixture with your hands to form dough, adding more water drop by drop if dough is too dry (dough should be firm and not sticky). Knead dough until smooth and elastic, 8 to 10 minutes. Cover and let sit for 30 minutes.

Roll pasta:

Divide dough into 8 pieces, then flatten each piece into a rough rectangle and cover rectangles with an inverted large bowl. Set rollers of pasta machine on widest setting. Follow directions on pasta maker to roll and cut the desired pasta.

Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Brown Butter and Sage

November 19th, 2010 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 8

INGREDIENTS

2 (1¼ lbs) russet potatoes
1 (¾-lb) sweet potato
1 large egg
½ teaspoon nutmeg, freshly grated
Salt
Freshly ground pepper
â…“ cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano plus more for serving
1½ to 2 cups all-purpose flour plus more for dusting
½ stick unsalted butter
1 cup sage leaves (from 1 bunch)

PREPARATION

Preheat oven to 450°F. Pierce russet and sweet potatoes in several places with a fork, and then bake until just tender, 45 minutes to 1 hour. Cool potatoes slightly, then peel and force through ricer into sheet pan, spreading in an even layer. Cool potatoes completely. Lightly flour 2 large baking sheets or line with parchment paper. Beat together egg, nutmeg, 1 tsp salt, and pepper in a small bowl.

Gather potatoes into a mound in sheet pan, and form a well in center. Pour egg mixture into well, then knead into potatoes. Knead in cheese and 1½ cups flour, then knead, adding more flour as necessary, until mixture forms a smooth but slightly sticky dough. Dust top lightly with some of flour. Cut dough into 6 pieces. Form 1 piece of dough into a ½-inch-thick rope on a lightly floured surface. Cut rope into ½-inch pieces. Gently roll each piece into a ball and lightly dust with fl our. Repeat with remaining 5 pieces of dough. Transfer gnocchi as formed to baking sheets.

Bring large pot of water to boil; add salt and return to boil. Working in batches, boil gnocchi until tender, 5 to 6 minutes. Transfer gnocchi to clean rimmed baking sheet.

Melt butter in heavy large saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook until butter solids are brown and have toasty aroma, swirling pan occasionally, about 5 minutes. Add chopped. Turn off heat. Season sage butter generously with salt and pepper.

Transfer half of sage butter to large skillet set over medium-high heat. Add half of gnocchi. Sauté until gnocchi are heated through, about 6 minutes. Repeat with remaining sage butter and gnocchi.
Divide gnocchi and sauce among shallow bowls. Garnish with sage leaves.

Swiss Chard & Caramelized Onion Lasagna

November 19th, 2010 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 8

INGREDIENTS

2 tablespoons Swiss chard, rinsed with stems removed, chopped
6 yellow onions, sliced thin
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 medium shallot, chopped
4 garlic cloves, chopped fine (Save 1 tablespoon)
5 sprigs thyme, chopped
4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
4 cups milk, warmed
½ cup grated Asiago cheese
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
4 tablespoons regular olive oil
1 handful toasted pine nuts
Freshly ground pepper and salt, to taste
2 teaspoons sugar
1 pound pasta sheets

PREPARATION

Preheat oven to 400°F.

For sauce

Melt the butter in a heavy-bottomed saucepan. Add shallots and sweat them until translucent, 3 to 5 minutes. Add garlic and thyme sprigs; cook, 1 minute. Stir in the flour and cook, stirring constantly until the flour cooks and bubbles a bit (don’t let it brown) — about 2 minutes. Add the warm milk, continuing to stir as the sauce thickens. Bring to a boil. Add salt and pepper to taste, lower the heat, and cook, stirring for 2 to 3 minutes more. Add fresh nutmeg and remove from the heat. Strain sauce through fine mesh strainer and then let cool while you prepare lasagna. This constitutes the Béchamel sauce.

For lasagna

In large sauté pan, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat. Add reserved 1 tablespoon garlic and cook, until fragrant, 30 seconds. Add Swiss chard and cook until tender, stirring often, about 5 minutes. Transfer chard to medium bowl, and season with salt and pepper. Set aside. Wipe out skillet, heat remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and cook, stirring, until onions begin to brown all over, about 15 minutes. Sprinkle with sugar and stir. Cook, stirring, until deep amber in color, about 20 minutes more. Set aside. This constitutes the layer of caramelized onions.

Lightly oil a 9 x 13-inch baking dish or coat with nonstick cooking spray. Coat bottom of prepared dish with ½ cup of sauce. Layer bottom with a single layer of noodles. Spread half the chard over the noodles. Add another layer of noodles, arrange caramelized onions on top, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Spread another ½ cup sauce over all. Add another layer of noodles, followed by the remaining chard mixture. Finish with remaining noodles and sauce. Sprinkle with Asiago cheese.

Loosely cover baking dish with aluminum foil. Bake lasagna for 30 minutes. Uncover, bake 10 to 15 minutes more, or until lightly browned and bubbling. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.

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