Homemade Meat Ravioli | Recipe | Nonna's Ravioli

Are you sick of hearing about nonna yet?  Another one of her amazing recipes is her meat ravioli.  Just like everything else she makes, they are delicate, flavorful and melt in your mouth.  As far as I can remember, it's always been served in chicken broth, so I never even considered serving it any other way, although I'm sure you could serve them with sauce.

Last Christmas, my mom broke her ribs and I took over preparing the Christmas meal.  I had gone to my mother-in-law's for Christmas Eve and had intended to be back at my parents' house in the early morning to continue cooking.  But due to reasons beyond our control, we didn't make it back until noonish.  No problem!  Realizing early on that we would be late, I called up my brother and aunt and instructed them on what needed to be done until I arrived.  And let me just say, they were incredibly helpful!

But, totally my fault, I had forgotten to tell them that when they reheated the chicken broth for the ravioli, to make sure to measure at least 40 ladles of broth to ensure we had enough for everyone and not to eyeball it.  When it was time for me to serve the ravioli, I realized there wouldn't be enough to go around.  I had served the adult table first, so it meant that two people at the kids' table would have to go without.  My niece, La Petite Critique was my little helper that serving the soup.  Since we were the last two people to sit down, we were the two to go without.  La Petite looked so stricken to be missing out the ravioli and chicken broth that my heart broke looking at that little, sad face.  Even though everyone at the kids' table offered their bowls, La Petite wouldn't take it saying it wouldn't be fair to take theirs.  So I went over to the adult table, whispered to my aunt what happened and she willingly gave up her bowl.  We pretended that we had forgotten there was another pot of soup and told La Petite there was enough for her after all.  And La Petite was smiling wide and bright again as she gobbled down her ravioli and soup.  Yes, these ravioli are that good! 

Nonna did not have a Kitchenaid mixter and taught us how to make ravioli the old-fashioned way.   However, I do have a Kitchenaid mixer, so my recipe instructes how to make the ravioli using both the pasta roller and ravioli attachments.  If you've never used the pasta roller attachment and are trying it for the first time, trust me when I tell you that it's normally for the dough to fall apart into a hundred pieces when you first put it through the roller.  Bunch up the crumbs in a ball again and roll it through.  After a few passes, the gluten will form and the pasta will begin to take shape.  Don't get frustrated.  After you get the hang of it, making ravioli is really fun!! 

Homemade Meat Ravioli Recipe
Yields: 8-12 servings

1/2 pound meat diced (pork or veal)
1 tablespoon butter
1-1/2 tablespoons onion, finely chopped
Salt and pepper
1/2 cup ricotta cheese
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese
1 egg yolk

1. Sauté onion in butter over medium heat 1-2 minutes, until tender. 
2. Add meat and cook until meat is no longer pink.
3. Transfer to a food processor and pulse a few times to chop.  Don't allow it to puree.
4. Put mixture in a bowl and add remaining ingredients.  Combine well and set aside.

2 c all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
1/2 c boiling water

1. Put the flour and salt in a food processor.  Pulse to combine.
2. Add the butter and pulse until the flour has the texture of rough cornmeal. 
3. With the machine running, slowly add the water. 
4. Gather the dough into a ball and place on a floured surface.  Knead lightly, just until the dough is smooth. 
5. Divide dough in half.  Keep one-half covered with a wet towel while you work with the other.
6. Attach the pasta roller attachment to your Kitchenaid mixer.  Process dough through the Kitchenaid to create long, wide pasta sheets.  NOTE: Pasta sheets should only be twice as long as your baking sheet.  If it is longer, cut, reroll excess dough and process through pasta roller.  Repeat with remaining dough.  Set aside pasta sheets.
7. Fit Kitchenaid Mixer with ravioli attachment.  Fold pasta sheet in half, turn crank a quarter turn, then lock hopper into place.  Stuff ravioli with meat, turn crank to create a strip of ravioli.  Continue filling and cranking, being careful not to overfill the final row of ravioli.  Lay finished ravioli sheet on baking sheet.  Repeat with remaining pasta sheets.
8. Let ravioli sheets sit at room temperature for approximately 10-15 minutes before seperating.
9. Boil ravioli in chicken broth.  When ravioli float to the top, they are done cooking.  Ladle chicken broth and ravioli into soup bowls.  Serve immediately.

MAKE-AHEAD TIP: Lay ravioli on a backing sheet, taking care to keep ravioli separated.  Place in the freezer for at least 30 minutes.  Once frozen, place in a large ziplock bag to store.  Frozen ravioli can be placed directly in boiling chicken soup.


Karena said... [Reply]

Oh you have won my heart with home-made pasta!! So good to find you!

Come visit soon!

Art by Karena