|Pasta making, Scappi, 1570|
Ravieles, #8, from the Two Anglo-Norman Culinary Collections, 14th Century
Ravioli, #10, from The Neapolitan Recipe Collection, 15th Century Italian
Ravioli ready to serve of herbs fantastic, from the Libro di cucina, 15th Century
and also used the ideas of the sweet, fried pastas to concoct our own, historically-inspired filling.
The next several posts will cover those individually. We redacted the recipes ourselves using cheeses we had on hand. We made a double batch of pasta dough and a small amount of each type of filling so we had enough dough to try all four.
This post contains the pasta recipe and the Ravieles, #8.
First, The Pasta
The recipes just call for a paste of flour and water, sometimes suggesting saffron or sugar to be added too. We wanted more guidance on it, so we turned to our trusty friend, The Joy of Cooking by Irma S. Rombauer and Marion Rombauer Becker (1984 edition).
On page 213 there is a recipe recommended for raviolis as long as you cut and fill the dough before it dries. They state that if you are a beginner, do not try to make noodles in damp weather. The humidity was up for my area (70%) but there was no rain or clouds so we hoped that would work for us.
White or Green Noodle Dough or Fettuccine
On a large pastry board or marble tabletop make a well of:
2/3 cup all purpose flour
Drop into it:
barely combined with :
1 tablespoon water
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon oil
|The salt made it into the picture this time|
We made a double batch and mixed it on the counter top by hand.
|The egg mixture overfilled the well but it was not a problem|
After that, we wrapped it in plastic tightly and put it into the refrigerator.
Next: The First Filling, Ravieles, #8
Take fine flour and sugar and make pasta dough; take good cheese and butter and cream them together; then take parsley, sage, and shallots, chop them finely, and put them in the filling. Put the boiled ravieles on a bed of grated cheese and cover them with more grated cheese, then reheat them.
3 ounces of provolone
7/8 ounce by weight of salted butter, softened
2 teaspoons finely chopped shallot
1/2 tablespoon finely chopped parsley
1/2 teaspoon dried sage
|Double or triple quantities at will|
|A close up: everything is chopped fine|
Pack into a covered container (makes about 1/2 cup) and refrigerate.
Assembling the Ravieles
|This is half of the dough|
|Yes, nine from one fourth of the dough|
Next we rubbed water between the filling piles and placed the other thin sheet of dough on top. After stretching the top sheet a bit to better fit the bottom sheet, we pushed the dough down onto the filling with the idea to press out the air. Each pile was sealed all around and then we trimmed them into individual pieces.
|Sealed, ready to be cut apart|
A large pan filled with water flavored with beef broth and a bit of saffron was brought to a strong simmer. The ravieles were dropped in individually, stirred gently, and cooked for two minutes.
Afterwards they were fished out with strainer, drained, and placed in a bowl. Even though the recipe says to cover it with more cheese, we were interested in tasting them just as they were.
Oh wow. This was really tasty! Three of us tasted and it was my favorite and the second favorite of the other two. I liked that the flavor was not distinctly any one of the ingredients but a blend that made it intriguing on the tongue. It was stronger than I expected and that was a pleasant surprise. When I thought about it, I could distinguish the sage flavor from the rest and could taste the butter in the creamy, cheesy texture. But in all honesty, it was just an exciting flavor blend.
Definitely a success.
If I were to change anything, I would have microwaved or otherwise cooked the shallot a bit to reduce its impact. The few minutes in the hot broth did not cook it enough to remove its bite. But that was when I was actively trying to find something to change about the filling. Not bad for a 700 year old idea!