I’m starting to think that I need to adjust my menu planning routine to include checking the weather report. It was a balmy 83 degrees here in Chicago last night and I was in my kitchen making mushroom and ricotta stuffed ravioli. It was one of those nights where the last thing I wanted to be doing was standing over a stove, spatula in hand. There’s something unappealing about cooking when there’s more than a touch of humidity in the air, and you find yourself with tiny beads of sweat collecting on your forehead, even indoors. I think the saving grace in all of this is that as soon as I pulled my ingredients out of the refrigerator and began chopping I heard a raucous clap of thunder, immediately proceeded by an all-out downpour, so it least I wasn’t missing out on sunshine and soft breezes.
Lucky for me (and you) this is one recipe worth turning the stove on for, no matter how hot and sticky it might be.
These savory ravioli feature earthy chunks of chantrelles and criminis married with woodsy and fragrant rosemary, and sumptuous cream cheese and ricotta. I went for low fat for the cream cheese and fat free for the ricotta, since both were on hand from something else, but you could easily go more indulgent with full fat versions of each. If you wanted to make this more gourmet, mascarpone would also be fantastic in place of the cream cheese.
This recipe makes a huge batch and you could certainly half it, but since homemade ravioli can be time consuming I prefer to make a bigger batch than I need for one meal and to freeze the extras. They’re great for nights when I might be tempted to turn to takeout or cheese and better than any pre-made versions I’ve found at the store. To freeze, simply complete all the steps to make the ravioli, but don’t cook them. Lay them in a single layer on a sheet pan or cookie sheet lined with parchment paper until frozen solid. (I usually do this overnight.) Then, simply pop them into a freezer save container or freezer storage bag and simply cook them up as needed! I’ve found they keep for up to 3 months in standard containers and as long as a year if you vaccum seal them before freezing. I served this a simple white wine sauce I previously posted about here (substituting vegetable broth for the seafood stock) and some sliced sauteed crimini mushrooms. I also used wonton wrappers to make this an easier meal (I can only do so much work in this hot weather) but you could just as easily substitute fresh pasta dough.
Adapted from Evil Shenanigans
Yields 48 ravioli
-1 ounce dried chanterelle mushrooms
-2 cups boiling water
-1 1/2 cups ricotta cheese (I used fat free)
-1 8-ounce package cream cheese (I used low fat), softened
-1/2 cup parmesan cheese
-1 teaspoon olive or canola oil
-1 cup chopped yellow onion
-1/4 cup white wine
-4 cloves garlic, minced
-8 ounces crimini mushrooms, chopped
-1 1/2 teaspoons worcestershire sauce
-1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
-1 package of 48 wonton wrappers, like Nasoya
-1 egg, lightly beaten
Place the dried chantrelles in a bowl and pour the boiling water over the top. Allow the chantrelles to sit for 20 to 30 minutes, or until reconstituted and chop.
In a separate bowl, fold the ricotta and parmesan into the cream cheese until well combined. Set aside.
In a saute pan over medium heat, add the oil. When the oil is hot, add the onion and garlic to the pan and saute until the onions are translucent, about 3-5 minutes.
Deglaze the pan with the white wine, scraping up any brown bits and cooking until the liquid has evaporated. Add both kinds of mushrooms to the pan and cook until the mushrooms have softened and are tender. Then add the worcestershire sauce and rosemary to the pan and cook for 2 minutes longer, until no liquid remains. Remove the pan from the heat and allow the onion mixture to cool slightly.
Add the onion mixture to the cheese mixture and stir together until well combined.
Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. To assemble, place 1 tablespoon of the filling in the center of a wonton wrapper. Brush the edge of the wrapper lightly with water. Fold the wrapper in half, enclosing the filling completely and forming a triangle. Pinch the edges to seal. Transfer the ravioli to baking sheets. Repeat with the remaining filling and wrappers. Working in batches, cook the ravioli in a large pot of boiling salted water until just tender, stirring occasionally, about four minutes per batch.
Hungry for more ravioli? Try my recipe for Maryland Crab and Goat Cheese Ravioli or Ravioli Filled with Potato, Bacon, Baby Leeks and Garlic Scapes
And if you’re hungry for some sweet or savory treats this weekend, check out the Food Blogger Bake Sale on Saturday, May 14, 2011.
Last year I baked Deep Chocolate Brownies with Chevre Swirls for the sale and I’m hoping the treats I bake for this year’s sale will be equally delectable and make even more money.
If you’re in Chicago, come check out our sale hosted by my friend Maris of In Good Taste of at The Poison Cup Wine & Art Boutique at 1128 W. Armitage Ave (between Clifton and Seminary). Between 12 pm and 3 pm you can sample the goods of more than 20 local bloggers including What’s Cookin’ Chicago, West of the Loop, EZ Bake Oven, Not a Crazy Vegan, Blondie’s Cakes, Joy’s Misadventures, Engineer and an Oven, Chefdruck Musings, NBC Feast and so many more. Rumor has it there may also be wine tastings. I’m just saying, baked goods and wine make for a pretty good combo.
Don’t live in Chicago? Don’t fret. Sales are going on nationwide thanks to the amazing organizational powers of Gaby of What’s Gaby Cooking. Check out her site to find a location near you to bake or to buy and help us raise money for Share Our Strength. Last year we raised over $16,000 and we’re hoping to top that and then some.