Whole Wheat Squash Ravioli With Sage Butter

by admin on October 17, 2007 · 22 comments

Emboldened by my recent foray into recipe-less gnocchi, I decided to try my hand at homemade ravioli. My local Whole Foods was teeming with squash, so I grabbed one Red Kuri and one Delicata for the filling. I peeled them with a sharp knife, cut them into halves or quarters lengthwise, then scooped out and discarded the seeds.

I arranged them on a broiling tray, sprinkled them with salt and pepper and drizzled them with olive oil. I roasted them at 450F until they were tender, about 35 minutes.

For the pasta, I put about 4 cups of whole wheat flour into the KitchenAid mixer, and added three eggs. I figured I could just add more flour if the mixture was too wet.

I mixed the eggs and flour together until they formed a dough and pulled away from the sides of the bowl.

To develop the gluten, I let the dough hook knead the pasta for about 15 minutes.

I rolled the kneaded dough into a ball, wrapped it in plastic wrap and let it rest for 20 minutes at room temperature.

When the squash was tender, I pureed it in a food processor with enough olive oil to make it smooth. Then I mixed in a couple of dollops of ricotta cheese, some grated parmesan, a few red pepper flakes, a handful of chopped parsley and a few grinds of nutmeg. I seasoned it all with a little sea salt and some freshly ground black pepper.

I rolled the dough in flour to keep it from sticking, cut it into quarters with a pastry cutter, and flattened out one of the quarters so I could roll it into a long thin sheet.

I fed the dough through the largest setting on the past roller, flouring it all the time to keep it from sticking. It took about three passes to make it long and uniform.

I kept adjusting the roller so make the sheet thinner and thinner. I wanted the sheet thin enough to be tender when cooked, but not so thin that it would tear.

I cut the sheet into thirds to make it easier to work with, then laid the sheets out on a floured cutting board.

Then I just put a spoonful of filling along the bottom half of each sheet. I wanted enough filling to balance the doughiness of the pasta, but not so much that the pasta would be bursting with filling.

I folded the sheets lengthwise over the filling, and pressed around the filling to take out as much air as possible, sealing the layers.

Then I just cut off the excess pasta and cut between the raviolis to separate them.

I brought a large pot of salted water to a boil, added the raviolis, and simmered them until they floated, the pasta floated and the filling was warmed through, 3-5 minutes.

I heated some thinly sliced sage leaves and a few red pepper flakes in a couple of tablespoons of melted butter until the butter browned slightly. I lifted the raviolis from the simmering water with a slotted spoon and added them to the sage butter. I stirred them around for a minute or two, grated over some fresh parmesan and slid them onto a plate.

The whole wheat flour gave the raviolis a hearty, rustic texture and complemented the nuttiness of the squash. Not traditional Northern Italian ravioli, but also not a bad lunch after a morning of working hard.

{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

Peggasus October 17, 2007 at 1:40 pm

Yes! I was given some acorn squash a few days ago, and this is exactly what ‘I am craving!’ Good timing!

I think I’ll use 1/2 whole wheat and 1/2 regular flour though, 100% whole wheat is a bit too chewy for me, and I need to do something with the sage in the garden before it freezes.

Thanks! Great pictures, as always.

NYC cook October 17, 2007 at 5:51 pm

This is a terrific blog. Congrats! Really like the step-by-step photos. I made squash ravioli last weekend and added a little roasted sweet potato (a la Marcella Hazan) to my usual squash/ricotta mixture to give a little fuller flavor. The idea might work particularly well with the whole wheat pasta.

Sylvia October 18, 2007 at 12:06 pm

Yummy,ravioli di zucca ,when I made ravioli I normally use butternut squash with Parmesan and ricotta. I love your sptep by step and the wonderful photos

Michelle October 18, 2007 at 1:56 pm

Concur about the photos! It takes getting excited about a new recipe to another level…well done. Now I just need to figure out what I could add or put on the side to aid to my constant carnivorous cravings…

Sarah Meyer Walsh October 24, 2007 at 5:27 pm

Love the photos and how to on your site… I recently started The District Domestic and am exploring the food blog scene in DC…

Keep up the great writing!

Sarah October 25, 2007 at 5:45 pm

Michelle, try adding some sauteed pancetta/bacon to the sauce. Or even in the filling. Now I’m getting hungry…

Erin January 1, 2008 at 1:23 pm

I think I just fell totally and completely in love with your blog. Your photos of the process are beautiful. I love making ravioli and your recipe sounds fabulous. As soon as I am back in the US with my pasta maker and my access to squash (I’m in Ghana now) I am definitely going to give this a try.

Erin January 1, 2008 at 1:25 pm

Sarah’s comment reminded me. I made some pumpkin gnocchi with brown butter sauce and added walnuts and pancetta. I don’t know how traditional those additions may be, but they had a great flavor combo with the earthy sweetness of the squash.

Hot Garlic August 2, 2008 at 7:35 am

I just clicked over from Food Gawker and all I can say is WOW. Seriously, Wow. This looks incredible. I am really impressed and I do my fair share of food-blog stalking, so I’ve seen a lot of stuff!

I too am always looking to use whole-wheat so that our food actually delivers some nutrients, cause isn’t that the point? This is great. I smell a new sidebar link…

PS-Your photography is beautiful! And I love the clean simple design of your layout!

Alexa August 2, 2008 at 11:13 am

Amazing step by step display. Your pictures are beautiful and the recipe looks amazing.

fanny August 2, 2008 at 12:00 pm

oh that looks absolutely delicious.

Naama August 3, 2008 at 3:43 pm

I`v been looking for a whole wheat pasta recipe for a really long time, yours looks just great! thanks! :)

rrraia January 3, 2009 at 8:50 pm

Mmmmm! Just made them and ate them.. so delicious. I used some sweet potato in the filling and added lots of walnuts to the pan sauce. I made about a hundred and froze half. Kudos on the beautiful photos!

Elizabeth January 20, 2010 at 4:29 pm

Thank you for the beautiful step by step instructions! My family doesn’t eat eggs so we are often left out of the ravioli loop. I plan to try your recipe with Ener-G egg replacer and see how it turns out! We have gone fully whole wheat in our house so this blog was perfect!

A different Elizabeth April 14, 2010 at 3:55 pm

This is so cool! My kids and I went through a serious pasta making craze over the winter, making everything from whole wheat ravioli to tortellini (which didn’t turn out) and spaghetti. I can’t wait to try this one – nice twist!

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