Three-Cheese Tortellini with Parmesan Broth

tortellini

What do you think of this artsy photo of my tortellini??  Pretty yummy looking.  Am I right??

I woke up yesterday thinking, “Today I will make pasta.”  I wanted to challenge myself and make a style of pasta I’ve never tried before.  Tortellini it was.

Now, I know that if I had a tortellini craving I could just shop the freezer section of my local market, but why do that when fresh pasta tastes infinitely better??  And besides, fresh pasta is so simple to make.  All you need is flour, eggs, salt, and a little patience and elbow grease.

As for the filling, typically tortellini is filled with a meat or cheese mixture.  I decided to go with a trio of cheeses – ricotta, Parmigiano-Reggiano, and Asiago.  I love the silky texture of ricotta, and I love the salty bite that Asiago and Parmigiano-Reggiano provide.  Fresh parsley is a natural choice in terms of herbs, and I added a touch of freshly grated nutmeg to warm up the flavor a bit.  After a few grinds of black pepper and a little kosher salt, my filling was done.  Super delicious, super fast and easy, and you can spread the leftover mixture on slices of toasted baguette for a snack!  Yum!

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Making fresh pasta shouldn’t be intimidating.  Really.  I mean, you get to use your hands and mix things up!  It’s easy, and once you do it a few times, you’ll have the feeling for it and from then on you’ll choose fresh over frozen or dried pasta any chance you can.

The only warning I’ll give to you is that making fresh pasta can be a little time-consuming.  So, your best bet is to make it when you have a couple of hours to spare, or you can always make it the night before and store it covered in the fridge prior to rolling it out.

It helps if you have a pasta attachment for your stand mixer, or even a counter-clamp pasta machine like this.  If not, a rolling pin will have to suffice.  Don’t fret, it’ll be fine.

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It is important to let your dough rest for at least 30 minutes after you have kneaded it.  This allows the gluten to develop and as a result, the dough becomes more pliable.  Some might say otherwise, but why not take advantage and give yourself a rest while you’re at it?

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