This is my favorite Christmas dinner Italian course and has become a tradition for more than 10 years. I always love the bright red color of the sun-dried tomatoes combined with the green spinach filling of the pillows, aka ravioli, with a touch of fresh basil. So festive. If you do not have the time to make you own ravioli, another tradition, you can always purchase some fresh spinach ravioli at your local grocery store. This sauce is made in about 5 minutes time. I pair this with a beef tenderloin with a mushroom wine reduction sauce, Dauphinoise Potatoes, and some fresh haricot vert, blanched and sautéed with lemon infused olive oil. This years dinner will be complete with a festive Peppermint Cheesecake, recipe forthcoming.
3 large eggs
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
(for red pasta dough, add 1 tablespoon tomato paste and omit the salt)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1 (10-ounce) bag spinach, stems removed
salt & pepper to taste
1 (15-ounce) container ricotta cheese
1 large egg
¼ cup parmesan cheese, grated
1 cup shredded mozzarella
Sun-Dried Tomato-Pancetta Butter:
1 (4 ounce) package thinly sliced pancetta, coarsely chopped
½ stick butter
¼ cup sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil, diced
½ teaspoon finely chopped fresh thyme
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 teaspoons fresh basil, chopped, for garnish
See my blog for directions on how to make the pasta dough, spinach filling, and forming the ravioli.
To make the sauce, place the chopped pancetta in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Cook until crisp and brown, about 5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, removed the pancetta to a paper towel to drain. Add butter, sun-dried tomatoes, thyme, and black pepper to skillet and cook over medium heat until butter is melted. Add reserved pancetta, toss sauce with cooked ravioli. Top ravioli with fresh basil and freshly grated parmesan cheese, if desired.
Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and Bon Appetito!!!