I only recently started to make my own pasta from scratch. Not only do I find it to be an enjoyable, creative, and relaxing task, it yields such fantastic results. That said, it's as time-consuming as you think, but it's so worth it.
Today were using spinach, mushrooms, and ricotta for the filling, a traditional egg pasta dough recipe, and a buttery, sweet, caramelized onion sauce topped with crispy fried onions and parsley and seriously, this is the best thing I have ever made.
I was low-key bragging to my friends about them for weeks. lol.
Raviolis with spinach, mushrooms, ricotta, and a caramelized onion sauce are delicious for a few reasons.
First, the combination of spinach, mushrooms, and ricotta creates a well-balanced filling that is both flavorful and satisfying. Spinach provides a fresh, earthy taste, while mushrooms add a meaty depth of flavor. Ricotta is a classic Italian cheese that is creamy, mild, and slightly tangy, which helps to balance out the flavors of spinach and mushrooms.
Second, the caramelized onion sauce is a perfect complement to the filling. The slow-cooking process of caramelizing onions brings out their natural sweetness and creates a rich, complex flavor. This sweetness pairs well with the earthy, savory flavors of the filling, creating a harmonious taste. Top it with crispy fried onions, and HOLY SHIT, this is a luxurious, rich, satisfying experience. Each bite is to die for.
Finally, the texture of the ravioli is also a key element in making this dish so delicious. The pasta is tender and chewy, while the filling is creamy and soft, and the caramelized onion sauce is velvety and rich. The cripsy fried onions are...well.. crispy. The combination of textures is as good as you think it is.
Overall, the combination of flavors, textures, and cooking techniques make ravioli with spinach, mushrooms, ricotta, and caramelized onion sauce WORTH THE EFFORT!
PASTA DOUGH - Recipe Adapted from The New York Times
2 cups all-purpose flour, more as needed
1 tsp pink salt
3 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
4 tsp coconut aminos or sugar
1/2 cup salted butter
2 tsp dried basil
salt to taste
1 tbsp olive oil
8oz cremini mushrooms, finely diced
4oz spinach, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, pressed or finely minced
1 tsp each of salt, black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and crushed red pepper, more to taste
1 cup full-fat ricotta cheese
shaved parmesan cheese, crispy onions, parsley, optional
FOR THE DOUGH - Recipe Adapted from the New York Times:
Combine flour and salt in a large bowl, making a well in the middle. In a small bowl, beat together the eggs, egg yolks, and olive oil, then pour into the well in the flour. Mix the dough until it forms a smooth consistency. Knead for 10 minutes until it becomes elastic. Cover with plastic or a cloth, and let it rest for about 30 minutes.
Lightly sprinkle a wooden board with flour. Cut off one-third of the dough; keep the rest covered while you work. Roll the dough lightly in flour, then flatten it into a rectangle about the width of your hand. Using a pasta roller or attachment to your kitchen aid, roll out the dough, starting at the widest setting and working your way thinner and thinner until the dough is almost translucent. For my pasta attachment, I start at width 2 and go to 7 (2 is wider, 7 is thinner). Add flour to the dough as you go to prevent sticking in the pasta maker. Repeat with the remaining dough.
IF YOU DO NOT HAVE A PASTA MAKER: Roll a rolling pin over the dough up and down, left and right. Flip the dough over about every two dozen rolls. If the dough sticks, dust it with more flour. Repeat until the pasta is roughly 24 inches in length and 8 inches wide. Dust with flour and set aside; repeat with remaining dough.
FOR THE ONIONS:
In cast iron, heated over medium, add the olive oil. After 20 seconds, add in the sliced onion and let it sizzle for about a minute, stirring occasionally. Then lower the heat to medium-low. Stir onions occasionally for about 30-40 minutes. The trick to caramelized onions is "low and slow and stir often." About 20 minutes, add in the coconut aminos. Continue to stir until they are brown and shiny. Then add the butter to melt, then the basil. Set aside.
FOR THE FILLING:
In a cast iron skillet heated over medium-high, add the olive oil. Once hot, add the mushrooms. spread out across the pan and cook undisturbed for 4 minutes. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, and crushed red pepper, and then toss well. Cook another 4 minutes and add the spinach. Mix well to combine. Then lower to heat to low and let the liquid cook off. Transfer to a bowl and drain more if needed. You do not want the filling to have alot of liquid. Then stir in the ricotta. Taste test and adjust seasoning if needed.
Take one sheet of pasta dough and measure the halfway point. On one half, scoop 1 heaping Tbsp of filling 1 inch apart from each other across the length of the dough. Using your finger, apply some water along the edges to act as glue for the dough. Then fold over the other half, pressing down around the filling to remove as much as possible from around the filling/under the dough. Then using a knife cut out the ravioli, and trim as necessary. See video above.
In a pot of boiling water, cook the ravioli until they start to float, and transfer to the skillet with the sauce. Coat well. Transfer to a plate and top with desired garnishes. Enjoy!
*If you have leftover pasta dough, you can freeze it in a plastic bag. When ready to use, pull it out an hour before you're ready to roll it out.