Friday, December 9, 2011

Cocoa Ravioli with Ricotta & Lemon filling in Pistachio Pesto

Traditional Pesto, from Liguria, is made of fresh Basil, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Garlic, Pinenuts with the addition of Pecorino and Parmigiano cheese. This Pistachio pesto is from Sicily, the only Italian region where Pistachio plants are cultivated. The famous Italian Pistachio from Bronte is mainly used to make this pesto. Of course you can use any kind of (unsalted) pistacho to make it. I've served this Pistachio Pesto with handmade star shaped cocoa ravioli with a filling of Ricotta and grated lemon zest, an original recipe by Myitaliancuisine for Christmas. This could be your very special Italian Christmas or New Year's Eve original dish.  Cocoa, ricotta and pistachio are a very nice combination of flavours. I recommend to use pure unsweetened cocoa powder to make the pastry.

Serving 4
- For the Ravioli
100gr Durum semolina (Italian: farina rimacinata di grano duro, tipo 0)
200gr all pourposes flour (Italian: farina di grano tenero, tipo 00)
30gr Usweetened cocoa powder
3 eggs
A pinch of salt
250gr Fresh ricotta
1 egg
Grated zest of half organic lemon
50gr crushed pistachio nuts
Salt  and pepper to taste
- For the pistachio Pesto
200gr unsalted pistachio nuts
4 Tbs Extra Virgin olive oil
1 Tbs Grated Pecorino
1 Tbs Grated Parmigiano Reggiano
Salt and pepper to taste
Some extra Grated Pecorino cheese to serve

-Prepare the ravioli pastry. Mix the 2 flours and the cocoa. Place the flour mixture on a worktop, make  a hole in the middle, pour the eggs, and a pinch of salt. Beat the eggs, mix it with the flour with a fork. Work the pastry till you get a even mixture. Give it a ball shape. make it rest for 15 minutes.
-Prepare the filling. Mix the ricotta with a pinch of salt and pepper, the grated lemon zest and the crushed pistachio nuts.
-Prepare the star shaped ravioli. Place the pastry on a floured worktop, roll it out with a rolling pin.
Add flour when needed. Roll it out till you get a fine pastry disc.
Start to cut out the stars of pastry with a star shaped form (the same used to shape Xmas biscuits) Cut as much stars as you can.
Place a teaspoon of ricotta in the middle of a start, cover with another star.
 Make sure that the borders are well sealed, if necessary use a little water and help pressing with a finger. Proceed this way till all the pastry stars are filled.
-Prepare the pesto.
In a mortar (or in a  small food mixer ) smash the pistachio nuts together with the grated cheese, little by little pour the oil on the mixture, mix well.
Bring a pot of salted water to a boil, cook the Ravioli.
 Your Christmas cocoa stars are ready! Place the ravioli on a serving plate and pour the pesto on it. add some grated Pecorino cheese, sprinkle some pistachio nuts. Buon appetito!
"Cocoa ravioli with ricotta and lemon filling" is an original recipe by MyItaliancuisine.  All right reserved ©MyItalianCuisine2011.

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