I love a good stuffed pasta, like ravioli or tortellini… and when it’s done right, it is good!
Making a good fresh noodle is the key and giving it a colour, really makes the difference; to have green pasta, just need to add cooked spinach to the mix.
This was my main dish for this past Easter meal; in Italy asparagus are already in season by the beginning of April and it is very common to eat them in North America as well even if too early for the vegetable to be “local”; sauteed in evoo and lightly seasoned with salt & pepper for this dish.
A good goat cheese filling, especially if you made your own, mixed with aged Parmigiano is the best choice for this dish; when you bite into the pasta and there is an “explosion” of gooey cheese fondue, the least you can say is “YUM”!
Toss them all together with smoky speck prosciutto and crunchy walnuts and you’ll have an excellent dish that comes together as a symphony of flavours!
Ingredients for 4 people:
16 asparagus tips
1 cup walnuts halves
100 gr speck prosciutto cut in strips or dice or you can use bacon sliced in strips
For the pasta dough:
2 cups all-purpose flour,
1/3 cup cooked spinach, pinch of salt,
2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
For the filling:
1 cup goat cheese
1/2 cup grated parmigano reggiano cheese
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Prepare you pasta dough. I usually chop the spinach in a food processor to make them as fine as possible to mix in well. Combine 1 cup flour with the chopped spinach, pinch of salt, 1tsp evoo to make the green pasta and mix till smooth and consistent dough is formed.
Mix the goat cheese and the parmigiano with the evoo. Roll the pasta into sheet, form the mezzelune with a round cutter or a cup, place a spoonful of filling in the center of each circle and fold in half.
Sautee the speck (or bacon) in a tbsp of evoo, till crispy; add the asparagus tips that should cook in the meat fat, add the walnuts and fry all together.
Boil the stuffed “mezzelune” pasta in salted water for 5 minutes till they float. Drain and add to the asparagus and speck mixture, tossing all together for a couple of minutes.
Serve with shaved or grated Parmigiano, some cracked pepper and a drizzle of good extra virgin olive oil.