Mushroom Ravioli with Beemster XO and Toasted Walnuts
Despite the fact that my studio kitchen is barely large enough to turn around in, it's always difficult for me to say no to a shiny new kitchen toy. I also happen to have a talent for rationalizing the purchase of cool specialty equipment in the name of feeding myself; thus, the introduction of a beautiful pasta machine to my collection of gadgets, and the impetus for several rounds of ravioli experimentation! In honor of the season, I decided to make mushroom ravioli, flavored with parsley and spring onion, and studded with toasted walnuts. And with Beemster X-O in my arsenal, I couldn't resist whipping up a rich and creamy sauce to drizzle on top!
With its toothsome, meaty flavors, I knew that Beemster's "Extra-Old" X-O would be a perfect counterpoint to the umami bite of a sautéed mushroom ravioli and walnuts. Paired with a crisp and refreshing Alsatian white wine, my Sunday supper was instantly transformed into a mealtime masterpiece.
For my pasta dough, I loosely followed Bob's Red Mill Basic Pasta Recipe, which uses semolina flour as a base. I found that the semolina produced a perfect-consistency dough, but I've also made pasta with all-purpose flour in the past, with some success. While this recipe can absolutely be reproduced without the help of a pasta machine, I’ve found that the machine helps to create a more delicate and consistent pasta texture.
FOR THE DOUGH
Whisk together the semolina flour and the salt.
Make a well in the middle and add the eggs, water, and oil; mix with a wooden spoon until it's all come together, adding a bit of water or a bit of flour as needed. The dough should stick together without clumps, and should not be too tacky.
Wrap your dough in plastic and let it rest for about 20 minutes, then knead it on a surface lightly-dusted with all-purpose flour for about ten minutes, until it's stretchy and elastic
Follow the directions on your pasta machine, or use a rolling pin to flatten your dough, and then cut your pasta into whatever size and shape you want.
FOR THE FILLING
Toast walnuts lightly in an un-oiled pan over medium heat, taking care not to let them burn and stirring frequently.
Combine onion, garlic, toasted walnuts, parsley, and a sprinkle of salt and pepper in a pan coated with olive oil over medium heat; cook about 10 minutes, stirring frequently.
Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
Note: For my mushroom ravioli, I cranked out a few wide sheets of pasta using the Basic Pasta Dough recipe (above), and then spooned teaspoon-sized amounts of sautéed mushroom filling directly onto a pasta sheet, spaced a few inches apart.
Trace around each mound of filling with a pastry brush dipped in water,, before placing a second thinly-rolled sheet of pasta directly on top.
Press down lightly around each mound, and either cut each pasta by hand, or use a ravioli-cutter if you have one, making sure to seal the edges!
Boil your filled ravioli for about 5 minutes, or until they rise and bob at the surface. You may need to work in batches, as to avoid crowding your pot.
Drain your cooked raviolis on a cooling rack and set aside.
FOR THE BEEMSTER XO SAUCE
Heat butter over medium-low heat In a large saucepan, until it melts.
Whisk in flour and cook for about 3 minutes.
Add milk slowly, whisking constantly.
Cook another 2 minutes or until sauce is thickened.
Add gouda and stir over medium-low heat until cheese is melted.
Drizzle your sauce over the mushroom ravioli, adding a bit of chopped parsley to garnish.