I’ve come back from the Tumblr dead with gifts! Soft, delicious, pillowy gifts in the form of tortellini.
A week ago I went to the gym and after decided I would treat myself to tortellini from a store that sells locally-made foods. I spotted some tortellini and was on my way to deliciousness. Until I bit into said tortellini and was sorely disappointed. More than disappointed, I was downright upset.
I was so upset I decided to make my own tortellini. A quick internet search yielded this recipe from Sir Alton Brown. Okay, cool…now how do I make this? To YouTube! Isn’t the Internet great? I did make some changes to Alton Brown’s recipe (see below), and I regret nothing except I should have added more olive oil to the pasta. One teaspoon was not enough, in my opinion and my pasta was a tad tough (albeit tasty!).
Enough talking, here’s what you’ll need:
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 large eggs
- 3 tablespoons water
- 1 tablespoon Olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
I should note that I used basil-infused olive oil which gave my dish extra flavor. Next time I’ll go crazy and use a little truffle oil.
I made mine by hand because my food processor is too tiny to handle all of this. First, have a clean and dry surface which you can work on. Make a mountain of flour and salt and dig a nice DEEP well in the center. That part is important, or else you’ll get the wet ingredients everywhere (or was that just me?). Mix all of the wet ingredients together before going into said well. Mix with your fingers until fully incorporated. You’ll want to knead your dough a good eight to ten minutes, then make a nice ball out of your dough and refrigerate for an hour.
Now it’s time for the filling. Like I said, I deviated from Alton’s recipe, and I was glad I did because my filling was delicious (not that his isn’t, I’m sure). Instead of the spinach, I roasted off some garlic with salt and olive oil in my handy dandy toaster oven. You could do this in your oven too, but why would you if you have a toaster oven? I also did not add the egg to the mixture, and was still pleased with my results. Especially since I saved the leftover* filling for eating with toast.
*I only ended up having enough patience for half a batch, I can’t lie.
- 1/2 cup ricotta cheese
- 1/4 cup grated Romano
- 2 roasted cloves of garlic
- 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- 1 pinch freshly grated nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons of grated Parmesan
I made a little extra than the above because I definitely needed
to eat a few spoonfuls test for safety. Safety first!
All right, you’ve waited an hour for your dough, congrats! Next, grab a pot that holds about half a gallon and fill it with that much water. Yes, you’ll have enough time here to get it to a boil and have tortellini ready to cook. Trust me. Crack an egg open, add a smidge of water and whisk, this will help you seal your pasta.
The YouTube video I linked to was immensely helpful in how to roll out your dough and stuff said dough. Some of my own tips:
- Quarter your dough, then quarter each quarter so you end up with equal sized pieces. Either way, your tortellini is probably going to be bigger than the stuff you’re used to at the store.
- DO NOT over-stuff your dough. I know it’s tempting and you feel like you’ve been given the shaft with store-bought suff because there never seems to be enough filling in your pasta, but you don’t want your tortellini to explode A good “measure” for me was half the size of a melon-baller.
Here are the steps that I did to shape my pasta:
Roll into an oval shape, fill pasta a little above the halfway mark of the shape, splash the egg white on one side. Then, fold in half and roll it shut (like the shape of a hot dog!), add egg wash to one tip and make a tight circle.
Lastly, it’s worth it. It really is. I know it’s going to take you like an hour or a little more to get through half a batch, but seriously, this is some good stuff. And you no longer need to shake your first at crappy store-bought stuff.
The next time I come back from the Tumblr dead, I’ll have something easier, I swear. But this is awesome, and you should make your own pasta because you can say, “damn, I made that!”
Croissants are a different story and I will never make them again, however.