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Sunday, 16 June 2013

Roasted Aubergine & Cherry Tomato Ravioli with Pesto

This is a truly excellent dish, if I may say so myself :-) Roasting the aubergine and cherry tomatoes before whizzing them up for the filling really concentrates their flavour, and as a result each mouthful of  ravioli is an explosion of delight.  I chose to serve them drizzled with pesto, as aubergine and tomato both marry well with garlic and basil to make a scrumptious, summery pasta dish.

INGREDIENTS (for two people as a main or four as a starter)

  • 200 gr of home-made pasta dough (see recipe here)
  • 1 large aubergine, or two small ones
  • 6 cherry tomatoes
  • One teaspoon of dried oregano
  • One teaspoon of dried rosemary
  • A tablespoon of freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • A tablespoon of pine nuts, to serve
  • Home-made pesto (follow this recipe)

Chop the aubergine in small cubes and place them in a roasting tray together with the cherry tomatoes, left whole. Drizzle them generously with olive oil, sprinkle with salt, pepper, oregano and rosemary and  toss them with a spoon, to ensure they are evenly coated. Roast them for 30 minutes in the oven, pre-heated at 180°C.

Note: in the picture above, you will see I have roasted more tomatoes than necessary for this recipe. This is because I needed them for something else and took advantage of the hot oven to roast them all in one go; however, you only need to use six for the ravioli filling.

In a blender, whizz up the aubergine, tomatoes and grated parmesan cheese. Check the seasoning and if necessary, add salt or pepper. This will be the filling for your ravioli; cover it with cling film and put it in the fridge to chill for at least 30 minutes.

Prepare your ravioli following the step by step explanation in my previous post ("Lobster ravioli"), until you have run out of filling.

Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil, and plunge the ravioli in the water (you may need to do this in two batches, not to overcrowd the pan). Wait for the ravioli to come floating to the surface, let them cook for a further minute, then remove them with a slotted spoon and place them on kitchen paper to absorb any excess water, just for a second. Divide them between two plates, drizzle them with pesto and sprinkle them with the whole pine nuts.

If you have any leftover pasta, and you probably will, you can use it to make maltagliati for instance, as I did (see photo below). Roll the sheets of pasta as if you were making lasagne, then cut them in rough shapes with a kitchen knife. Leave them to dry completely and put them in an airtight container until you are ready to use them.

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