Sunday, November 17, 2013

Ham and Parmesan Ravioli with Avocado and Crab Salad

I've been waiting for something good to make raviolis with and the ham was a great candidate.  I ground the ham up, a bit over half a cup.  I grated 1/2 cup parmesan cheese and mixed it into the ground ham.  

Fresh Pasta 

1 small egg
2/3 cup flour

Use a fork to mix the egg into the flour. When it can be made into a ball take it out and kneed it till it's mostly smooth. It should be very firm and not sticky.  If it's sticky, add flour.  Put in the fridge for half an hour at least. As the pasta is rolled out it gets sticky so small amounts of flour must be dusted on it as it's rolled. I roll mine to the second last stop on the machine. The last stop is so thin it's impossible to work with (or was when I was a newby).  I lay a piece over the mould, drop meat mixture into each pocket then lay another piece of pasta on top.  Gently press down the pasta to get the air out then use the roller to seal and make the edges. If you don't have a ravioli tray then simply put a teaspoon of meat on a piece of pasta, put pasta on top, press the air out and seal with your fingers.  Cut the raviolis out of the strip.

The sauce was simply Mezzetta Napa Valley Tomato Basil sauce. I can only make better sauce in late summer when the tomatoes are at their best. Just opening a jar of sauce does seem like cheating so I sliced up cremini mushrooms, fried them in butter and added them to the sauce. That was it for the pasta. The sauce always seems to let go of it's water on the plate but it sops up while it's being eaten.

The salad started out as crab, avocado and alfalfa but my sprouts were 2 days too late so I used a stick of celery instead.  An avocado, stick of celery, tablespoon of chopped fresh chives, olive oil, lime juice, salt, pepper and a can of crab all went into the salad. I tossed it up and served. I put a dollop of sour cream on mine just to see if it worked. Fern loved his salad as it was. I liked both, with and without sour cream.  Fern doesn't like creamy stuff too much so I wouldn't serve him the sour cream version. 

Fern said several times through the meal how good it was. He particularly liked the crab salad, which really surprised me. He said the raviolis were perfect and tasted wonderful. Never before have a I tried two new dishes in one meal and had them both succeed. It feels good to see that.

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