The past few days have been very hectic for me. I seem to have been losing track of sanity as work keeps piling up, and the list of chores never seem to end. And time, what can I say about time. It appears that the hours just slip by without my knowledge, and then the day comes to an end.
While I always ensure that I make fresh meals every day, some days we just have to be content with leftovers. Not that we mind leftovers, but they do lose their charm after 1 or 2 days. I had made a big batch of Sambhar (Lentil and vegetable stew) and we had it almost everyday of this week till we could not stand the sight of Sambhar anymore.
So when weekend dawned I wanted to make something special, something that was not just pleasing to the stomach but also very good to look at. I also wanted to do something that did not take a lot of effort as I was exhausted with the crazy week already. I wanted to snuggle in my bed, have a glass of wine, read a good book and not worry about but that was after eating something really delicious.
For some reason, I did not want to make Indian food at all and when I am not eating Indian it has to be Italian for sure. There is something about Italian food that my Indian heart really loves. Maybe it is the fact that Italian food is so fresh and wholesome, I just find it a very hearty cuisine to savor.
And we do love our pasta and fresh pasta at that. However. with my current state of laziness, I did not want to make pasta from scratch but still enjoy all the lightness that fresh pasta has. So when I got a bottle of the brand new VodkaO to try, I turned to my favorite chef “Donna Hay” for help. Not only are her recipes fresh and easy to make, her shortcuts are also simple to follow. And her cheats version of Ravioli where she uses Wanton wrappers instead of pasta is a fabulous hack that I swear by.
The ready made Wanton wrappers are a god send because they take away the stress and energy that I need to spend to make fresh Pasta and taste as good. And even though I was cheating on the pasta, I went all the way to make a delicious sauce from scratch. And the end result is for all to see. The Ravioli was soft and silky and the Vodka gave a lovely kick to a sauce that would have otherwise been bland.
Trust me when I say this, if I can make this anyone can because it is so easy to make. So while I tuck in with a glass of wine or perhaps a shot of Vodka, please enjoy the recipe. This is as fancy as fancy can get without the effort.
Recipe (Cooking time 60 minutes)
For the Ravioli
250 gms fresh Ricotta
2 tbsp freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 tsp Nutmeg powder
Salt & Pepper to taste
Zest of half a Lemon
150 gms Spinach
20 Wanton Wrappers
Parmesan cheese to serve along with a drizzle of Olive oil.
Chop the Spinach and place it in a bowl and add hot water on top. Leave it for 5 minutes and quickly drain the water and refresh the Spinach in cold water so it retains the colour. Squeeze the spinach to drain excessive water.
Mix the Spinach with Ricotta, Nutmeg, Lemon Zest, Salt, Pepper and Parmesan cheese. Remember the Ricotta may already be a little Salty, so be gentle with adding Salt for seasoning.
Place 1 wrapper on a work surface and put 2 teaspoons of the Ricotta mixture in the middle of the wrapper. Brush the edges of the wrappers with water and then place another wrapper on top and gently press on all sides to seal the edges completely. Repeat with the remaining wrappers till done.
Boil water in a large pan and add the Ravioli one by one. The Ravioli is done when the wrappers turn almost translucent and start to float on top of the water. Drain and gently place them in individual serving bowls. Top up the Ravioli with the sauce, garnish with some more Parmesan cheese and drizzle with a little Olive Oil. Serve Hot.
For the Mushroom and Vodka Cream Sauce
2 Shallots finely chopped
200 gms Sour cream
250 gms Button Mushrooms sliced
A few sprigs of Thyme
Salt & Pepper to Taste
25 gms Butter & 1 tsp Olive oil
½ cup Vodka – I used Vodka O which was silky smooth
Heat the Butter and Olive oil in a pan before adding the Shallots.
Sauté for a few minutes before adding the sliced Mushrooms to the Shallots.
Once the Mushrooms are cooked add the Sour cream and mix well. Add the thyme, Salt and Pepper and glaze with Vodka, mixing everything well.
Turn off the heat and spoon on top of the Ravioli ensuring you don’t over do the sauce. We don’t want to drown the beautiful pasta in too much sauce.