Sunday, May 07, 2006

Chicken Ravioli

Or what happens when I have to rummage through my freezer and pantry and make something happen with whatever is in there...

Overall yummy and comforting, plus the impressiveness of having made ravioli is helpful. I made with a white and red sauce, so both recipes are included.

All goes smoothly, but have extra milk or cream for the cream sauce; it inevitably gets too thick and needs some thinning out. Also, making the ravioli takes more time that I thought it would. I recommend an assembly-line approach.

Easy Pantry Chicken Ravioli:
(6 light servings, 4 hearty servings, I recommend serving with a green salad and fresh bread w/butter and a white wine w/ white sauce, or a mellow red wine with red sauce)
2 frozen boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 half white onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, peeled, whole
1/2 package frozen spinach, thawed, drained
2 large eggs
1/2 cup Italian bread crumbs
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 package round or square wonton wrappers

Classic Tomato Sauce:
1 jar or can whole plum tomatoes
1 half onion
2 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon olive oil
Chopped fresh parsley
Chopped fresh basil
Crushed red pepper
Salt and pepper

Béchamel or White Cream Sauce with Basil and Parsley:
2 tablespoons salted butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
White pepper
Garlic powder
Salt to taste
Ribbons of fresh basil
Chopped fresh parsley
Cream, Milk or Half-and-Half


For ravioli:
Poach chicken breasts and garlic in simmering water until chicken is cooked through - about 7-10 minutes. Meanwhile, sauté onions in olive oil until softened and turning golden.

Combine spinach, eggs, bread crumbs, mashed poached garlic, shredded poached chicken, onions and salt and pepper to taste.

Prep a large saucepan with salted water and a splash of olive oil over high heat and bring to a boil.

Meanwhile, lay out wonton wrappers in an assembly line. Working quickly, spoon 1 tablespoon filling on wonton wrapper. Using a pastry brush or your finger, spread water or an egg wash around the edge of the wonton wrapper. Gently lay another wrapper on top, press all the air out and make a tight seal. Trim edges if you want with a knife, cookie cutter or biscuit cutter.

Using a spoon, stir boiling water to create a whirlpool effect. Gently slide ravioli into water, one at a time. Ravioli are done when translucent and floating, or pasta and filling are cooked through, about 5 minutes.

For Tomato Sauce:
Sauté onions and garlic in olive oil until softened and cooked through. Salt and pepper to taste, add crushed red pepper for some heat (if desired), then mix in can or jar of whole plum tomatoes. Crush tomatoes with stirring utensil or your fingers, when heated through, add fresh herbs (or dried if you don't have fresh). Bring to simmer. Pour over ravioli, or fold ravioli into sauce and serve hot.

For Cream Sauce:
Melt butter in a saute pan, add flour. Cook until flour begins to brown, then slowly add milk/cream/half-and-half. Thickness of sauce will depend on what type of milk/cream you use, so have extra flour or milk on hand to regulate thickness of sauce. Stir continuously - once sauce begins to thicken, add seasonings and fresh herbs. Bring to simmer. Pour over ravioli, or fold ravioli into sauce and serve hot.

1 comment:

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