Monday, July 5, 2010

lemony kale ravioli

Approaching the one year anniversary of this blog has reminded me that one of my original intentions with it was to write and post recipes, and my photographs of them. As the blog has evolved, I've gotten further away from doing that. Coming up with new recipes takes time, of which I seem to have very little these days. Between working full-time, crafting (and trying to make a profit of it), becoming more consumed with photography, spending time with my husband, and being a mom, we're lucky to be eating, period. But, I recently got some encouragement from a reader (my cousin David) who asked me to keep posting recipes, and from today's habit post, which includes my photo of homemade coleslaw in the making (yay!). 

If you participate in a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program you've probably been getting your fill of cooking greens this spring and early summer. Our CSA box from Flying Cloud Farm has included them every week since it began in April, and that's fine by me. Present every week has been kale, one of my favorites. I love kale, I really do. I like it sauteed ever so slightly in olive oil with garlic and lemon zest, tossed into soup, or added to quesadillas or burritos. I came across several ravioli recipes using cooking greens, which inspired me to come up with me own kale ravioli recipe. 

I'm sure some of my Italian friends out there would be able to share their time-honored, delicious recipes for making ravioli from scratch. That's something I'd really like to try, but I probably won't have time until, say, I retire. So, this recipes relies upon wonton wrappers, a stand-in that works well and is used in a myriad of similar recipes. If you are adept at (or just ambitious enough to try) making your own ravioli, please do! In the meantime, here's a shortcut for you. 

Lemony Kale Ravioli
To save time, I made the sauce and the ravioli filling simultaneously - but for simplicity I'm listing the instructions separately.  

For the sauce: 

1 Tbs olive oil 
2 cloves garlic, minced 
1 1 lb, 13 oz can diced tomatoes 
1 14 oz can tomato sauce 
1 tsp dried thyme 
1 tsp dried oregano 
1 tsp dried basil 
freshly ground pepper 

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat until shimmering, add the garlic, and saute briefly until fragrant. Add the tomatoes, sauce, and herbs, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and let cook slowly while preparing the other ingredients. Season with pepper to taste just before serving. Feel free to sub fresh herbs for the dried if you prefer - just use 1 Tbs of each instead.

 For the ravioli: 

1 Tbs olive oil 
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 bunch kale, finely chopped (it's ok if the leaves are a bit damp)
zest of one lemon 
one small container ricotta cheese 
a handful of shredded pecorino romano cheese
1 package wonton wrappers
salt and freshly ground pepper 

Heat the oil in a 10-inch skillet over medium heat until shimmering, add the garlic cloves, and saute briefly until fragrant. Add the kale and stir to coat with oil and garlic. Saute until wilted and tender but al dente, about 5 - 7 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Scrape the kale into a medium bowl, add lemon zest and ricotta, and stir to combine. 

To assemble, place one wonton wrapper on a work surface with one corner towards you, so the wrapper forms a diamond on your work surface. Put a small spoonful of filling in the center of the wrapper, moisten two edges with a bit of water, and fold in half in a triangle shape, pinching the edges down to seal. Keep the filled raviolis covered with a damp paper towel as you work, and keep the stack of wontons covered until ready to use. 

To cook, bring a pot of salted water to a boil, add the ravioli, and stir gently. Cook for 2 - 3 minutes, then use a slotted spoon to transfer them to a colander to drain. Serve topped with sauce.  

You can easily freeze leftover ravioli - just place the filled but uncooked ravioli in a single layer on a baking sheet, cover with saran wrap, and freeze for about 1 hour, then transfer to a sealed container to store. To cook, toss frozen ravioli into boiling salted water and cook until tender, 4 - 5 minutes. You can also make what you want for one meal, then save the remaining filling and wonton wrappers tightly covered in the fridge until the following day. 

When making this I haven't gotten my proportion of filling to wonton wrappers just right - I had a bit of filling left over. I've saved it in my fridge to use as a sandwich spread this week. The ravioli would taste equally delicious with any other kind of sauce - a white wine, butter and herb sauce would be delicious, or just some fresh tomatoes and basil gently sauteed in olive oil. Or, just toss them with olive oil and shredded pecorino romano. 

It's ok if some of the raviolis come open while cooking. According to Lynne Rosetto Kasper, old Italian ladies she spoke with said this is a good thing, as it imparts even more flavor on their ravioli by enriching the cooking water. It's always nice when imperfections have a purpose. Enjoy!!


  1. Well, hello. Just a note to say that I poked my way over here, thanks to Habit, and am finding it lovely. As have been your daily pictures -- just stunning. Thank you for sharing.

  2. Carrie,
    Found your lovely blog whilst on the hunt for something different to do with my purple kale.
    Your lemony kale ravioli looks really wonderful. I especially like the fact that you used wonton wrappers, I have very little space in my kithen to be making and rolling out pasta!