Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Like most people, I'm too crazed during the week to make nice, fancy dinners; in my house, it's usually leftovers, take out, or something quick and simple. This leaves the weekend to do anything fun or with multiple steps. This past weekend, I looked at two sugar pumpkins I had bought, and thought "hmm, pumpkin ravioli. With brown butter. And sage. And toasted pine nuts."
Saturday morning, I split the pumpkins, saved the seeds, and roasted the halves for about an hour. I was planning to make my own pasta sheets, but I felt that may be adding on too many tasks to my 'take it easy' weekend. So I did the next best thing, I went to my favorite Italian store, Durso's, and picked up some of their fresh sheets. Chatting with the counter person, he asked what I was making, I told him and he replied, "oh, we make that too, but we use pumpkin in the sheets." Though they didn't have any that day, I will try to head back soon to check that out.
After my lazy Sunday morning, I took the pumpkin flesh, I had let it strain in a cheesecloth overnight, and mashed it up with ricotta, balsamic vinegar, and sage. I know I should have done this the day before so the flavor could fully develop, but I forgot. I worked on dessert for a while before turning my attention back to the ravioli.
With my nephew's help, we filled about two dozen ravioli with filling from a two-pound sugar pumpkin; a few could have helped from more filling and one or two burst in the boiling water, but about 80% made it through the filling and cooking process just right. With the ravioli cooking away, I browned the butter and added sage, and toasted the pine nuts for some crunch. The pumpkin filling can turn a savory dish sweet, luckily I remembered put in the balsamic vinegar and ricotta so that didn't happen. All in all, the dish was success: easy, kid-friendly, and tasty.
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