Holiday Feature


Ravioli Nudi
(Naked Ravioli)

Ravioli Nudi (Naked Ravioli)

This dish gets its name from the fact that it is really the filling of the ravioli without the pasta. I guess somebody was feeling lazy, didn't want to bother making the pasta, and wound up with a new recipe. This dish offers the best of the ravioli without the heaviness of the pasta, so it's perfect for a light first course. Don't drown these delicate ravioli in tomato sauce. I recommend serving them with just a little butter spooned on top.

Serves 4 as a first course

  • 1/2 pound ricotta cheese
  • 2 pounds fresh spinach, center ribs removed, washed
  • 5 extra-large egg yolks
  • 3/4 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • 1-1/2 cups grated Parmesan cheese
  • pinch of cayenne pepper
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 1/4 cup butter

Drain the ricotta in a colander.

Blanch the spinach in a large pot of salted water over high heat for about 5 minutes. Drain and cool under cold water. Squeeze the spinach in a dish towel until completely dry. (If it is at all wet you will have problems later.) Chop the spinach very fine.

Combine the ricotta, egg yolks, lemon zest, 1 cup of the Parmesan, and the chopped spinach in a mixing bowl. Mix well and season with the cayenne, salt, and pepper. Add the flour and mix well.

To form the ravioli, wet your hands in cold water and, taking 1 tablespoon of the mixture at a time, form into little balls.

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a gentle boil over medium-high heat. Cook the ravioli in small batches until they float, about 2 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and place in a serving dish. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese. Melt the butter in a skillet and spoon over the ravioli. Serve immediately.

Little Italy Cookbook
by David Ruggerio
Melanie Acevedo, Photographer
Artisan, October 1997, $29.95
Reprinted by permission


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This page created 1997 and modified November 2006.


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