Ricotta Basil Ravioli & Tomato Cream Sauce ♥

Let's be real here for a minute.
Life is not always glamorous. 
As much as all of us here at OhSO would love to glitz off to the cozy, new Italian place overlooking Laguna Beach with decor and a menu that's to-die-for, order a pasta dish with the finest ingredients we can't pronounce, then sink back into our plush booths after devouring the most heavenly dessert {this is all sans kids by the way...and remember that part where we didn't have to cook anything?}, life gets in the way.
Some of us may not get a chance for an amazing evening out with sick kids (I just put mine back to bed with some Motrin and a 101.4 degree temp), husbands studying for finals and the Bar, the expense, or you may decide to save your sanity (and romance) by avoiding the crowds and staying in.
That is where we come in.
We're lucky here in SoCal to have some beautiful weather, especially in comparison to some, er, other states we've each lived in (cough, Utah....cough, cough, Idah-COUGH). So a charming picnic is just what the romance doctor ordered. If you happen to live in one of these less-opportune states, bring the rendezvous indoors. Wherever you choose, create the scene and go all out, mushy style. 
If anything, it makes the food taste better...
Homemade ravioli is such a treat, and it is certainly a labor of love. An easy labor of love.
Make your dough, and knead, knead, knead. Your triceps will thank you (hate you?) later
You also must get it very thin. Like as thin as a dime (on the machine, the second-to-last number--2 or a 3). I split my dough and did it two different ways, with a pasta roller and the other by hand, and I honestly felt like they were both relatively easy. For ravioli, you don't want the dough to dry out, because then it's hard to get it to seal. For spaghetti, it's not as big of a deal since it doesn't need to adhere to anything, but here it is. So split your dough into fourths and keep what you're not working with covered. Also, let it rest before you work with it to really relax the gluten in the dough and make it more loose and pliable.
Make your delicious, classic ricotta filling and place on perforated raviolis. Brush around the edges with your eggwash (very lightly, you don't want too much)
Lay your second strip over the first, and wha-la!
Aren't those the cutest little raviolis you ever did see?
(Be sure to enter our ravioli stamp giveaway...ends on February 13th!)
Boil your hearts in a large pot of rapidly boiling, salted water for a couple of minutes, whip up your tomato cream sauce, and garnish with parmesan, basil, and of course, amore!
The flavor combination of the cheesy, basil centers with the rich, creamy sauce is out of this world. It's simple at the same time, which can be appreciated on this day devoted to love.

Ricotta Basil Ravioli with tomato cream sauce
Homemade Pasta:
2 3/4 c flour
3 eggs
1 T olive oil
1 t salt
1/4 c water

Ricotta Basil Filling:
1 1/2 c fresh ricotta
1 c freshly grated parmesan
1 egg
handful of basil, torn into pieces
1/2 t salt
1/2 t freshly cracked black pepper
1/2 t nutmeg

Tomato Cream Sauce:
28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
1 t butter
4 oz. cream cheese
1/2 c heavy whipping cream
sun dried tomatoes
salt to taste

Egg wash:
1 egg, beaten with 1 T water

1. Pulse flour, eggs, salt, and oil in food processor until you have coarse crumbs.
2. Slowly add in water through spout while motor is running just until it begins to form a ball.
3. Knead on floured surface 10-15 minutes until it's smooth and not sticky.
4. Cover with plastic wrap, refrigerate, and let rest 30 minutes. (Now is a good time to make filling and sauce)
5. Take out and divide dough into four. Work with one section at a time, keeping the rest covered.
6. Roll dough out with floured rolling pin, or use pasta roller to roll dough extremely thin.
7. For filling, mix all ingredients together in a bowl.
8. For sauce, melt butter in saucepan on low, then add cream cheese. Heat until cheese is melted or extremely soft and creamy.
9. Add crushed tomatoes to cream cheese and simmer on low about 10 minutes until sauce has darkened.
10. Add cream and sun dried tomatoes, continue to simmer on low until sauce has again darkened. Salt to taste.
11. Begin to boil large pot of salted water.
12. Working with very thin strips of dough, lightly imprint ravioli stamps onto dough.
13. Place 1 T ricotta filling onto center of each stamp imprint.
14. With pastry brush, very lightly brush perimeter of ravioli shapes with egg wash, so that the tops can have something to adhere/seal to.
15. Lay second strip of very thin pasta dough on top of first strip to cover the ricotta.
16. Gently begin to seal ravioli hearts by pushing on the ricotta filling to force out all excess air, then move towards the edges to seal. Repeat with all raviolis.
17. Use heart stamp to cut out each ravioli.
18. Gently toss in rapidly boiling water 2-4 at a time (depending on how large your pot is).
19. Boil 2-3 minutes, then lay on towel-lined plate to dry.
20. Serve raviolis with sauce, garnish with parmesan and basil.

P.S. Huge thank you to JD and Adrienne for supplying 
their gorgeous faces and romantic vibes
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1 comment:

  1. These look delicious! They must also be very flavorful. Great recipe!

    I just discovered your blog and browsed through some of your recipes, they all look scrumptious!

    I really enjoy reading your posts :) you have a new follower!

    Michela @http://cook-alaska.blogspot.it/


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