I learned a valuable lesson on Saturday night: Don’t start making ravioli 30 minutes before your guests arrive. Especially if you’re not dressed yet. Especially if your shopping bags are littered on the floor and counter top. Especially if your guests are punctual.
Thank God my guests were not very punctual. I pinched the last ravioli together 5 minutes after they were supposed to arrive and I still had time to throw on some clothes and makeup.
The ravioli in question were stuffed with a blend of peas, whole milk ricotta and a pinch of cardamom. I really wanted the creamy mixture to shine so instead of drenching them in sauce, I poached the ravioli in a concentrated Parmesan broth and served them in that. I think this is my new favorite method for serving ravioli. The chicken stock and Parmesan rinds had been simmering for about 3 hours by the time we ate and the stock turned a deep, nut brown color. The whole apartment smelled of Parmesan. It was wonderful!
And the ravioli were really good. Creamy and pea-y and a nice contrast to the tangy broth. The meal turned out great and I’ll definitely make it again. Though next time I hope to give myself a bit more of a head start.
Ricotta & Pea Ravioli in Parmesan Broth
40 (or so) wonton wrappers
8 oz. cooked peas
12 oz. whole milk ricotta
pinch of cardamom
pink of salt
freshly ground pepper
6 cups chicken stock
1 large rind of Parmsan cheese (or 2 small) with about a 1/2 inch of cheese still on it
Set a large pot on the stove on medium heat. Add the chicken stock and the Parmesan rinds and cover letting simmer for 1 – 3 hours so that the Parmesan will infuse the stock. (You can go as low as 30 minutes, but it won’t be as potent.) The smell of Parmesan should be overpowering (in a good way) when you life the lid.
In the meantime, make the filling and assemble the ravioli. To make the filling, place the peas, ricotta, cardamom, salt and pepper in the food processor. Blend for about a minute, or until the peas have blended into the ricotta. You want to take it easy on the salt since the broth will take care of that.
To assemble the ravioli, lay a large sheet of parchment on the counter and fill a tiny bowl with some water. You’ll use that water to wet the edges of the wonton so that the sides will stick together and seal.
Place a wonton wrapper in your hand and spoon about 1 tsp. of the ricotta mixture into it. You want to make sure you’re not overfilling them since that will cause them to explode when they’re cooking. Dip your finger in the water and run it along all the inside edges of the wonton. All the edges must be slightly wet or they won’t seal.
Gently fold the wonton diagonally, so that 2 opposing corners meet forming a triangle and pinch the edges together firmly, ensuring all sides are sealed. You don’t want the filling to escape once you start poaching them.
As you work, place each ravioli on the parchment, but don’t overlap them. Once you’ve made a row of them, cover that row with damp paper towels so that they won’t dry out.
When you’re ready to eat, simply drop each ravioli into the simmering broth for 2 – 3 minutes or until they become slightly translucent. Serve the ravioli in a deep bowl with a few ladlefuls of broth.