Homemade Ravioli and Fresh Tomato Sauce
This is a long post. Just sayin’. Long process = long post.
For those of you who just want to see the finished product, here you go.
Side note, we’re having pot roast today. And after writing this post I’m wondering why I didn’t have the foresight to get more ravioli supplies instead.
How did we put this awesome dish together? It all started with a giant bag of tomatoes from my grandpa’s garden.
He had given us some tomatoes when we stopped by a week or so before this. We had BLTs, salsa, salad, etc. and managed to eat all 5-6 tomatoes he’d given us. I sent him an e-mail thanking him for the tomatoes and to my surprise, my parents showed up at Market Day with a GINORMOUS bag of tomatoes that my grandpa sent for me.
What are two people going to do with that many tomatoes?
Simple. Make Smitten Kitchen’s fresh tomato sauce recipe I’ve been eyeballing all summer.
Fresh Tomato Sauce
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen.
Yield: About 4 cups sauce
- 4 pounds fresh from the garden tomatoes
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- large onion
- 3-5 cloves of garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon salt plus more to taste
- 2 T italian seasoning
- crushed red pepper to taste
Peel your tomatoes:
- Bring a pot of water to boil.
- Cut a small X at the bottom of each tomato.
- Blanche the tomatoes in the boiling water for 10 to 30 seconds, then either rinse under cold water or shock in an ice water bath.
- Peeling the tomatoes should now be a cinch.
- If one gives you trouble, toss it back in the boiling water for another 10 seconds until the skin loosens up. Discard the skins.
Finish preparing your tomatoes:
- If using plum tomatoes, halve each lengthwise.
- If using beefsteak or another round variety, quarter them.
- Squeeze the seeds out over a strainer over a bowl and reserve the juices.
- Either coarsely chop you tomatoes on a cutting board or use a potato masher to do so in your pot, as you cook them in a bit.
Prepare your vegetables:
- I finely chop my onion, and mince my garlic.
Cook your sauce:
- Heat your olive oil in a large pot over medium.
- Cook your onions and garlic, if you’re using them, until they just start to take on a little color, about 10 minutes.
- Add your tomatoes and bring to a simmer, lowering the heat to medium-low to keep it at a gentle simmer.
- If you haven’t chopped them yet, use a potato masher to break them up as you cook them.
- Simmer your sauce, stirring occasionally.
- 45 minutes is about the time it takes for perfect sauce, but the longer you cook it, the better it tastes.
- We cooked ours for several hours.
- If your sauce seems to be getting thicker than you want it to be, add back the reserved tomato juice as need.
- If your sauce is too lumpy for your taste, use an immersion blender or a regular blender to break it down to your desired texture.
- For the record, we blend ours.
- I like a chunkier sauce, but Mark likes his blended. So we blend for a short amount of time.
- Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and more to taste.
So now what? You make ravioli while your sauce is still simmering.
Grandma Cecconi’s Homemade Cheese Ravioli
- 1 pkg won ton wrappers
- 1 t cornstarch mixed with 1/2 c water
- [feel free to experiment with fillings, but we used:]
- 1 large container of cottage cheese
- italian seasoning
- 1/2 c cooked spinach
- 1/3 c parmesan cheese
- salt + pepper to taste
- 1 egg (to bind)
- Mix your filling ingredients together.
- Lay out a damp towel and lay 5-7 wonton wrappers down flat on it.
- Take about 1 t of filling and place in the middle.
- Using your pinky finger, dip into the cornstarch mixture and outline the edge of the wonton wrapper.
- Seal the edges of the ravioli.
- Repeat until you run out of filling or wrappers (we ran out of filling first).
- Bring a large pot of water with 1 T salt to boil.
- Drop your ravioli in the pot.
- Boil for 8-12 minutes — until the ravioli float to the top.
- Coat with sauce or olive oil to keep from sticking together.