Ah, it is one of my favorite recipes to write: fresh pasta!
I know, I know. Not everyone wants to make fresh pasta. It’s just so much work compared to buying a box. Even ravioli you can buy already made and fresh in the refrigerated section of the grocery store.
Trust me, I get it. Really. But also trust me when I say there are few things more rewarding in the kitchen than making homemade pasta. And truthfully, it really isn’t that difficult, especially if you’re just making noodles and not ravioli. Really you’re just mixing together some eggs and flour, letting it sit, then rolling it out. Plus if you have a food processor and/or pasta roller, you’re making it even easier.
No excuses for not having fresh pasta at least once a week if you have both of those! The hard work of making pasta is hard physical work. Also patience. Patience, patience, patience. Patience while incorporating the flour. Patience while keading for 10 minutes. Patience waiting another 30 for the dough to rest. And then patience rolling out the dough paper thin. But if you have a food processor? Incorporating flour and kneading has been cut in half with hardly any physical labor!
And if you have a pasta roller? Shoot, rolling out and guessing how thin to make it is the hardest part.
In the Test Kitchen we just have a food processor (for now), but I promise the first few times I made pasta I didn’t think to use the food processor so I did this whole process completely by hand.
And it’s still worth it.
But the food processor way of doing it just makes it so much easier. I will say, if you choose to use the food processor it will look like it’s not working at first. I had tried making pasta dough in a food processor before and it turned into sand. Thinking, “well, that’s not how it’s supposed to look,” I tossed it and went back to the traditional way. But this time I figured, what’s the harm in keeping the machine running a little longer? And can you believe it? Dough formed!
All this homemade pasta talk has me craving it…. maybe I’ll make some for lunch? Since it’s that easy to do! 😉
For the pasta dough::
6 egg yolks
2 cups flour
1 tablespoon olive oil
pinch of salt
For the filling::
18 ounces cherub tomatoes
2 tablespoons olive oil
salt & pepper, to taste
12 ounces mini mozzarella balls
1 bunch fresh basil
For the sauce::
7 ounces jarred pesto
any leftover tomatoes not used to fill the ravioli
1 lemon, zested
½ cup reserved pasta water
freshly grated parmesan
fresh chopped basil
*Tip: a food processor makes it much easier to mix the pasta dough if you have one! If not, follow steps for making the dough here.
Aroma Pasta Cooker
About 28 ravioli
Prep Time: 45 minutes
Rest Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
1. Place the eggs and egg yolks into the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until they are all mixed.
2. ½ cup at a time, add in the flour while pulsing in between. It should start forming a loose dough but not fully come together.
3. Add the oil and salt, then continue to run the food processor steadily until the dough forms. It will look like sand at first and as if it’s is breaking apart before it comes together. Just keep going; it will form into a ball of dough.
4. After a solid ball of dough has formed, remove it from the food processor and onto a lightly floured work surface.
5. Knead the dough for about 5-7 minutes (I usually use a timer just to make absolutely sure I’m kneading it long enough). You’ll know you’re done kneading when the dough is silky and easy to work with. Using a food processor to start the kneading process saves a lot of time compared to the traditional way of making pasta with a flour well.
6. When the dough is done being kneaded, form it into a ball and wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Let sit at room temperature for 30-60 minutes.
7. While the dough rests, preheat your oven to 375℉. Place the tomatoes onto a baking sheet, drizzle with the olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
8. Roast until they start to blister, about 20-22 minutes, then remove from the oven and let cool fully.
9. When the tomatoes are cool and the dough has set, start rolling out the dough. Cut the ball of dough into 8 wedges, working with one at a time and keeping the rest wrapped.
10. Take one of the wedges and form it into a square shape, then place onto a lightly floured work surface.
11. Use a rolling pinto roll the dough into a long rectangle; if the edges are round that’s fine! Keep rolling until the dough is very thin; probably thinner than you would think. A good test is to hold you hands behind it; you want to see your fingers slightly through the dough.
12. Use either a cup or other kitchen item around 3-inches in diameter (I use a biscuit cutter) to cut the dough into circles. Remember that each raviolo has two sides, so you want an even number. Roll up any scrap dough and place under a slightly damp paper towel so you can reuse it.
13. Dip your fingertip into a little bit of water and rub it along the edges of the circles you cut out. This will help the ravioli stick together.
14. Fold up a leaf of basil so that it will fit in the center of the cut pasta circle. Top it with one of the roasted tomatoes, and then one of the mozzarella balls. If it seems they will be too stuffed, but the mozzarella balls in half.
15. Take another pasta circle and gently stretch it slightly with your fingers. Lay it over the pasta with the filling (with the wet side down), and carefully press the edges together. Use a fork to further press and seal the edges of the raviolo together.
16. Repeat rolling the dough and making ravioli until all of the ingredients are gone. Set aside.
17. Fill the inner pot of the pasta cooker about halfway with water. Place the lid on and set it for the Thick Pasta setting.
18. Once the water is boiling, use a slotted spoon to place the ravioli in 3 at a time. Let cook for 3 minutes then remove, setting aside on a plate. If the cooker switches off from a boil, reset it until all of the ravioli have been cooked. Reserve half a cup of the pasta water and set aside.
19. Drain the water from the inner pot, then place it back into the cooker. Set it for Warm.
20. Add the pesto, any leftover tomatoes, the lemon zest, and reserved pasta water to the inner pot. Stir it with a long handled wooden or heat-safe spoon to heat through the sauce.
21. Add in the ravioli to the sauce and gently stir to coat them all and warm through. Turn the cooker off.
22. Serve ravioli with parmesan, balsamic glaze, and fresh basil.
Recipe inspiration from Proud Italian Cook.