Pumpkin ravioli with goat’s cheese and golden raisins
( SERVES 4 )
Photo by Tam West
There are many variations of ravioli with different shapes and fillings. One of the most delicious I ever tried was during the famous white truffle festival in a small village near Alba in the north of Italy. We were served three plump ravioli — one of potato puree, one of chestnut and one of pumpkin. No guesses as to which was my favourite.
- Heat oven to 160C. Pour 2 cups boiling water over raisins and allow to soak. When plump and cool, drain and keep aside.
- Toss pumpkin in olive oil, season with salt then place in a roasting dish. Cover with foil and cook for 40 minutes until soft. Allow to cool then mash, mixing in nutmeg. Season lightly with salt and pepper.
- Unwrap the pasta dough and flatten into a rectangle shape slightly thicker than the pasta machine’s widest setting (number 1). Dust lightly with flour and roll through machine. Turn the dial to the next narrowest setting and roll again, gently pulling with your hand as it feeds through. Don’t allow it to bunch up and jam under the machine. Continue to roll dough through, dusting lightly with flour as you go — narrowing the setting each time, until the desired thickness is reached. For ravioli it is best to get the pasta as thin as possible, but this does make it harder to work with. Start off with rolling your dough to the third or second-narrowest setting and practise making ravioli. Once you have mastered this, try rolling the next batch a little thinner.
- Lightly dust the bench with flour, lay pasta sheet on top. Cut into 40cm lengths. Work with one sheet at a time, otherwise, the sheets will dry out too quickly and be too hard to form shapes (leave the rest under a clean dry tea towel). Pipe pumpkin on pasta in one long line at regular intervals or spoon dots at regular intervals. Lightly brush the tiniest amount of water on to the pasta around the pumpkin to help seal. Carefully fold pasta sheet over and use your fingers to press and seal the dough in squares around the pumpkin; try to eliminate air pockets forming. Use a ravioli wheel to cut to shape, lift off and place on lightly floured tray lined with greaseproof paper.
- To cook ravioli, use two large pots of boiling, generously salted water. Add 2 tsp olive oil and gently cook ravioli for 5-6 minutes until they are al dente. Meanwhile, in a large frying pan, cook the butter on a medium heat until it starts to turn brown. Add sage leaves and drained raisins. Turn off heat. When ravioli are cooked, carefully drain then add to the sauce in the frying pan. Lightly toss ravioli in butter sauce then serve on hot plates or bowls.
- Spoon raisins, sage leaves and butter sauce over ravioli and garnish with crumbled goat’s cheese.
More of Geoff's pasta recipes