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Butternut Squash Ricotta Tortellini

November 7, 2011

I’m not going to claim that making this tortellini was quick and easy. It wasn’t. But rolling the dough and folding them up individually was a fun way to spend some time and seeing the final result was satisfying. Plus I got to use an old fashioned pasta maker for the first time.  And of course, they’re yummy! Oh, and credit for recipes goes to Jamie Oliver’s first book: “The Naked Chef”

I wouldn’t worry too much if you’re missing one of the dried spices for the spicy roasted squash, since there are plenty of other flavours going on in this dish!

  • 3 1/2 – 4 cups flour (plus extra for dusting)
  • 5-6 large eggs
  • 1 medium-large butternut squash
  • 2 tsp coriander seeds
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp fennel seeds
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 clove garlic
  • olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped basil
  • 1 1/4 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 grated parmesan
  • watercress
  • balsamic vinegar 
  1. Squash Preheat the oven to 400f Chop the butternut squash into about 8 pieces. Cut them lightly in olive oil. Combine coriander, oregano, fennel and 1 chopped garlic clove in a mortar and pestle and smashed them together (or just mix them in a small bowl). Sprinkle this mixture over the squash. Put some salt and pepper on too. Bake for 30 minutes or until tender.
  2. Pasta Dough Put flour in a bowl and make a well. Add the eggs. Using a fork, break up the yolks as bring the flour in from the side. Work the dough with your hand for a few minutes until its smooth and elastic. Jamie Oliver says to use 5 eggs, but I needed 6. Wrap it in plastic wrap and put it in the fridge for 60 minutes. If you’re using a pasta maker like me, divide the dough into 4 balls. Dust them with flour. Flatten the ball slightly then run it through on a thick setting. Afterward, run it through again on a thin-medium setting. It should be about 2 mm thick. If you’re using a rolling pin, divide the dough into two balls, dust the surface and pin, and roll it out to to 2mm thickness.
  3. Stuffing Scrape meat out of roasted squash and combine in a large bowl with ricotta, basil and parmesan.
  4. Tortellinis Use a cup or cookie cutter to cut the pasta into circles. Put a small amount of stuffing in the centre (see above), dip a pastry brush (or your finger) in water and brush around the edge of the circle. Fold dough over and close the seams. Bring two corners together to meet and push them together.
  5. Dish Boil the tortellini until it rises in the pot (this should only take a few minutes). Meanwhile heat some olive oil in a frying pan and toss in some watercress leaves. In another pan, heat some balsamic vinegar so some of it evaporates, leaving you with a reduction. When the tortellini is done, put in the frying pan with the oil and watercress and toss it around. Put it in a bowl, drizzle with balsamic reduction and add any extra olive oil or parmesan desired.
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