Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Ravioli, Ravioli

Last night, I, together with my parents and my brother, went to Italianni's for dinner. The Bistro Group of Companies gave my Mum gift certificates as well as guidelines for us to judge and rate the food, service and the general atmosphere of the restaurant. We've done this before in T.G.I. Friday's and it was a cool treat. Italianni's is this franchised Italian restaurant located around the metro. Back then, the family and I loved it. Limited seating, limited menu choices, big servings. Now, the menu is quite expansive, while the the quality and quantity of the food was, let's just say, not at par with what I remember. An Italian restaurant that doesn't serve thin crust pizza? Hmmmm.

Anyway, this blog is not to critique restaurants, so, let's keep it moving. I didn't get the Italian fix I was looking for last night and I woke up today still craving for something Italian. It doesn't help that this novel I'm currently reading is a fictional backstage pass to the world of TV cooking, and right now, the Casey is in Blogona, Italy with the crew of Good Morning America, making fresh pasta. Also, I was rummaging through my bookshelf and saw my The Naked Chef cookbook from Roxy. It was as if the world was telling me to cook my own pasta already, and so I did.

I always told myself that I never made my own pasta because I didn't have my own pasta machine. A machine that flattens your dough making it long and thin as paper. Reading my novel and Jamie Oliver's instructions that although making pasta by hand won't get it as thin as the machine, it is still possible. So why the hell not? I also had some leftover eggs from when I made my chocolate mug cake, it was a clear go.

I was thinking of making a simple tagliatelle, but I had enough cheeses in the fridge to combine, so I decided on ravioli. Shame on me for going for the harder pastas, but the bigger the risk, the bigger the outcome, delicious outcome. The pasta dough recipe from Jamie Oliver calls for 1 pound of flour and 5 eggs, but I wasn't ready to make so many, so I cut the recipe down.

Big Risk, Two-Cheese Ravioli

Pasta Dough
1 large egg (I used a medium one and my leftover egg)
1 cup of bread flour, plus more for dusting
1/4 cup Peccorino
1/4 cup Kesong Puti
Pasta Dish
3 tbsp butter
3 cloves garlic
salt and pepper
chili flakes (optional)

1. Put the flour on a clean surface and make a well in the middle. After mixing the eggs, pour them in the well.

2. Using a fork, mix the egg, slowly incorporating the flour. When it gets molded enough, start using your hands to for the dough.

3. Gently knead for about 1 minute until elastic and smooth. Form into a ball, wrap in saran wrap and refrigerate for an hour.

4. After chilling, unwrap the dough. Flour your surface and start flattening your dough with your rolling pin.

5. This will be a good time to prepare your cheeses. Grate and combine.

 6. Continue rolling your dough, as thin as you can get it without breaking. Cut it lengthwise about 2 inches thick in width. Then add your cheeses in the middle, leaving enough space in between.

7. Cut the dough in between cheeses.

8. Dip your finger in water and line the sides of the dough square, close to the filling. Fold your dough over and press the waterline. This will seal the ravioli so your filling won't spill out.

9. Bring water in a saucepan with salt and oil to a boil, then lower your heat to medium and cook the ravioli for 3-4 minutes.

10. While the ravioli is cooking, melt the butter in a non-stick pan and add the garlic. Cook for about 2 minutes until the garlic becomes slightly brown.
11. Add your cooked ravioli gently, mixing it with the butter and garlic. Season with salt, pepper and chili flakes.
12. Serve with more cheese as desired.

I was surprised with how these turned out. They were good! Seriously. Exceeds expectations for my first attempt at making my own pasta. The dough was incredibly al dente. It had a lot of bounce and texture, the way pasta is supposed to be and the filling was just great. The sharpness of the pecorino is balanced out by the kesong puti's delicate, creamy flavour. I didn't want to take too much risk with the sauce, so butter and garlic it was, simple but still delicious. I'll definitely try it with tomato sauce next time.

I still can't believe I was able to make this. This was just pure bliss and satisfaction. I can't wait to make pasta again and have the family try it (fine, friends too). Might as well, I finally convinced Mum to buy a pasta machine. Won't be long now!



  1. Hey Iya! Polo (Gab's brother) here! Great blog! I wanna try to make pasta tooooooo! I just wanted to ask what flour you used and where did you buy it? Thanks!

    1. Oooh thanks for the question, I should be more specific with the flours I use. Jamie Oliver says to use bread flour for basic pasta. As for where I got it, there's this little shop near my place where they sell most baking needs. I'm not sure if you can find some in a grocery store, but Santi's Delicatessen usually has. :)


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