Thursday, February 19, 2009

How to Cook Everything Vegetarian: Ravioli & frozen yogurt

Another Wednesday, another pasta night with my mother. Yesterday, she taught me how to make a whisky sour and showed Isabel how to stomp on egg shells until they're the perfect consistency for the worms in our new worm box. She's a great mom. 

Mark Bittman's pasta dough is supple and lovely, the filling for his spinach and ricotta ravioli superb. If we'd just made a butter or tomato sauce, all would have been well. But I was determined to make the walnut sauce which Bittman describes as "a rich, bread-thickened nut sauce that's unbelievable with stuffed pasta."

Mistake. The sauce was super-garlicky and rich and totally overpowered the delicate spinach ravioli. Don't know what he was thinking.

For dessert: blondies (identical to recipe in How to Cook Everything, but with a small amount of whole wheat flour subbed in) which were fine, and frozen yogurt.
 
Isabel and I are slightly obsessed with replicating Pinkberry frozen yogurt. If you've never had Pinkberry, imagine a tangy, snow-white cream with a pure, very sour yogurt flavor. Bittman's recipe calls for some yogurt, a little milk, sugar syrup and lemon rind. We omitted the lemon rind and you would think the resulting dish would taste purely of yogurt. And it did. Which is when I realized that Pinkberry tastes more like yogurt than yogurt does. How is that possible? An internet search quickly revealed things I didn't really want to know about Pinkberry
 

8 comments:

  1. Have I spotted a Cath Kidston place mat in your photo? Great food styling!

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  2. See, you're hardcore. I believe very much in homemade pasta, but I can't get myself to fill it. So we just don't eat ravioli, which is such a shame.

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  3. I think I'm going to adopt your mom. She appears in various photos wearing artfully tied scarves which miraculously seem to blend with your chosen food themes. Styling? I wonder... (hey, you started the fashion thread in the food column!)

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  4. i'm with layne on the homemade ravioli- so daunting. but you have inspired me, so layne, you & me, let's overcome this!

    and i'm with philomere on the incredible stylish tying of that scarf. artful indeed, and jaunty too.

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  5. On the ravioli question, I think the trick is to make BIG ones, like the ones in restaurants that serve 3-5 3"square ravioli for dinner. And use a gentle sauce. Then you max flavor, pasta and presentation while minimizing the fussy cutting process.

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  6. On the ravioli question, I think the trick is to make BIG ones, like the ones in restaurants that serve 3-5 3"square ravioli for dinner. And use a gentle sauce. Then you max flavor, pasta and presentation while minimizing the fussy cutting process.

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  7. Anonymouse 11:41, let's do it. Sometime before next Saturday, I will make and fill my own ravioli.

    Sorry to hijack the comments, Tipsy.

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  8. Anonymous, I mean. Sorry 'bout that.

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