This glorious filled pasta – with sweet peas, zesty lemon and creamy whipped ricotta – is the perfect way to celebrate the fresh flavours of spring and will wow your dinner guests
- Serves: 4 persons
- 50g unsalted butter
- pea shoots, to serve
- parmesan (or vegetarian alternative), to serve
- 150g freshly shelled or defrosted frozen peas
- 100g parmesan (or vegetarian alternative), finely grated
- 100g full-fat ricotta
- 1tbsp panko breadcrumbs, toasted
- 1egg, lightly beaten
- 5stalks dill, finely chopped
- 250g ricotta
- ½lemon, zested
- 300g 00 pasta flour
- semolina, for dusting
Step 1To make the filling, pulse the peas in a food processor for 30 seconds or until finely chopped, then combine the remaining ingredients, except the dill, with ½ tsp of salt and ground black pepper, and pulse for another 20 seconds. Season and stir through the dill. Transfer to a piping bag with a wide nozzle, and chill until ready to use. (Any left-over filling after making the ravioli can be stored in the fridge and is perfect served either as a dip or spread generously over a thick slice of toasted sourdough.)
Step 2Using a food processor, blend the whipped ricotta ingredients with ½ tsp of salt and a little ground black pepper for 2 minutes until smooth and whipped. Make sure you use whole-milk ricotta for this recipe – its richer consistency transforms the cheese into a creamy base to accompany the pasta. Chill until ready to plate up.
Step 3Tip the flour into a large bowl, make a well in the middle, then pour in the egg. Using a fork, slowly incorporate the flour into the egg in a circular motion until combined into a shaggy, crumb-like texture. Use your hands to work the dough around the bowl, pushing and folding to incorporate any dry bits of flour before tipping out onto a worksurface.
Step 4Knead the dough into a ball by pushing down and away from yourself to stretch the dough, before folding it back on itself in half, rotating 90 degrees and repeating. The process should take anywhere between 5-10 minutes. If you find the dough is resisting, wrap it in a resealable bag and leave for 5 minutes before returning to knead. Once the dough is smooth, wrap and rest for at least half an hour.
Step 5Cut the dough into quarters. Working with one piece at a time, use your hands to flatten out into a disc, dust very lightly with flour and then pass twice through the widest setting of a pasta machine. Fold in half and then repeat again, passing through the pasta machine before reducing the setting and rolling through twice more before moving on to the next decreasing setting. Repeat until the dough sheet is smooth and silky, with a thickness of 2-3mm.
Step 6Lay the pasta sheet on a lightly floured worksurface and mark the halfway point. Using a piping bag, pipe the filling in small walnut-sized mounds evenly spaced across the dough, leaving a 1cm border around each to give enough space later when forming each ravioli. Very lightly wet a fingertip and trace around the piped fillings before bringing the other half of the pasta sheet over the top and gently pressing around each mound to expel any air pockets and seal the dough. Use a stamp to cut out the ravioli – how much pasta you keep on the ravioli is up to you, simply cut the ravioli if you prefer more pasta to filling. Put the ravioli onto a semolina-dusted, baking-paper-lined tray and repeat with the remaining dough and filling. The ravioli can be frozen if not being used on the day – freeze in a single layer on a tray to avoid sticking before transferring to a bag.
Step 7Cook the ravioli in a large pan of boiling salted water for 3-4 minutes (if cooking from frozen this will be 6-8 minutes). While the ravioli are cooking, heat the butter in a frying pan until foaming. Transfer the ravioli to the pan and toss gently to coat for 1 minute before spooning into serving bowls over the whipped ricotta and garnishing with pea shoots, black pepper and parmesan.