These humble but exciting pecorino ravioli with orange zest and brown butter flavored with rosemary will bring any dinner to a new level!
It’s so exciting making your own pasta. And it’s not even that difficult. Actually I’d say it’s one of the easiest doughs for a beginner. Some may not agree, but I’ve tried many different types of dough and pasta is the only one that was successful every time. Even if it wasn’t perfect, it was managable. Don’t get me wrong, there’s a whole science behind a perfect pasta dough, which I should probably cover in another post, but if you follow some basic rules, there shouldn’t be many problems.
- 1 egg per 100 g flour. Works every time.
- The dough should rest at least 30 minutes. This makes the gluten form and the dough becomes elastic and easier to handle. You will notice a huuuge difference in dough before and after resting just by touch.
- Lightly flour the dough before rolling it out, especially if you are using a pasta machine, otherwise it will start sticking and tearing when you get to a thinner setting.
Oh, and one more thing! When you start bringing the dough together it might look a little dry but after a couple of kneads it will hold together much nicely and after 10 minutes of kneading it will start forming tiny bubbles under the surface, which means it’s done. Wrap it up and wait. You’ve got the best pasta dough in th world ready and waiting!
So, we’re making ravioli. It’s a type of filled pasta that comes in many shapes and sizes. The filling can be whatever you like it to be. But since it’s almost New Year’s Eve I’m all about fancy shmancy 😀 So I used pecorino as the main focus of the dish, mixing it with some fresh ricotta cheese and freshly grated orange zest. The zest will give it a kind of richness and freshness. And to make it even more psh we’re adding brown butter with rosemary on top.
The pecorino ravioli are perfectly savory and flavorful on their own, so they shouldn’t be drowned in a strong flavored sauce. Brown butter is just delicate enugh to enhance the flavores but not overpower them.
I’ve never made brown butter before, but once I tried it on these pecorino ravioli, I’m sure it’ll become a regular at our house. The nutty taste of the brown butter is so delicious and very different from plain old melted butter. Plus, you can make it in advance and keep it in the fridge for when the opportunity comes.
Great, so we’ve got everything covered. Let’s get preparing for the New Year’s Eve party and making some delicious orange pecorino ravioli. Have a great party, folks!
- 4 eggs
- 400 g all-purpose flour
- 250 g pecorino, grated
- 250 g ricotta
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- zest of 1 orange
- 120 g butter, cubed
- 3 stems of rosemary
- grated pecorino
- orange zest
- Pasta: Sift flour into a bowl or onto the countertop, make a well in the middle and add in the eggs. start mixing the eggs adding in flour little by little, until the dough comes together. For this first step you can alternatively use a food processor. Knead the dough by hands for about 10 minutes, until you see tiny bubbles form under the surface. Wrap the dough in plastic foil and let it rest for at least half an hour. The dough will become much softer and strechier with resting, so don't skip it!
- Filling: Mix pecorino, ricotta, nutmeg, black pepper and orange zest in a bowl.
- Brown butter sauce: Heat a sauce pan over medium heat and add butter and rosemary. As the butter melts it will start bubbling and changing color from light yellow to golden and lastly brown. The mik solids will start to separate from the fat and will form a dark brown sediment. When this happens and the butter is brown with a nutty smell, pour the butter to a cold bowl. If you prefer to remove the sediment pour the butter in the bowl slowly, leaving the sediment in the sauce pan. Remove the rosemary.
- You can prepare the brown butter sauce while waiting for pasta dough to rest and reheat it over low to medium heat before serving.
- Rolling pasta: Cut pasta into 8 pieces and roll each one out as thinly as possible using a little flour to prevent sticking. You can use a rollin pin (the more labor intense method) or use a pasta machine (the easier method) and roll the dough starting at the thickest setting, continuing to the thinnest setting that the dough can still handle. If it starts tearing you should stop one setting thicker. I suggest running a test with a tiny portion of the dough before going full scale.
- When the dough is rolled out spread it over a flat lightly flouered surface and cover with a tea towel.
- Filling pasta: There are many shapes of raviol. The easiest is a simple square or rectangle. Spread a heap teaspoon of filling 4 cm apprart over the lenght of a rolled out pasta. Using a brush or a finger lightly wet one long edge of the dough and the part between the filling. Fold over one half of the dough lenghtwise and press around the filling to get all the air out. Using a pasta cutter or a sharp knife cut rigth in the middle between the filled parts and use a fork to press around each ravioli, so the dough really sticks together and doesn't open during cooking.
- Cooking pasta: Boil water and add salt like for any other pasta, then add the ravioli and cook for about two minutes.
- Meanwhile heat up the butter.
- Drain and serve onto plates adding brown butter on top and garnishing with some more pecorino, orange zest and rosemary.
- Serve immediately.