This recipe was inspired during a recent luncheon with a friend at a classy Italian restaurant. Eating a plate of ricotta/spinach ravioli that was totally uninspired and lackluster, served with a lemon sauce that swam at the bottom of the plate in a sloshing liquid pool I decided to create something much more original and exciting for the taste buds. The ingredients and preparation began to take shape in my mind during the hour long drive home. Serves 6.
1 14 oz. can pure pumpkin pulp (make sure this is not seasoned for a pie)
2/3 bok choy full size bulb, use all greens and some of white bulb
2 garlic cloves, smashed
2 Tbl. grated parmesan cheese
1 tea. salt
1/2 tea. oregano
1/4 tea. fresh cracked black pepper
1/8 tea pumpkin pie spice mix
1/4 cup water
1 beaten egg
45 or 90 prepared square shape won ton wrappers
1 egg, beaten
Finely chop the bok choy and place in a warm skillet of extra virgin olive oil and smashed garlic. Bok choy must be small enough as to not make lumps in the ravioli filling. You may use a food processor and just a couple pulses if your knife skills are not yet excellent.
Stir bok choy and garlic mixture just until fragrant and not browned.
Add remaining ingredients to the same skillet: pumpkin pulp, parmesan, salt, oregano, pepper, pumpkin pie spice and water. Stir and slowly simmer until water is evaporated and flavors bloom and meld, about 3 minutes.
Use a small ice cream scoop the size of a melon baller and drop balls of pumpkin filling onto a non-stick cookie sheet. Place cookie sheet in the freezer. This freezing method will make the pasta wrapping process easier. This size made 45 balls (approx. 3 grams)
When you are ready to assemble the ravioli you must decide the shape and how many won ton wrappers you will need. The classic square ravioli will require 90 wrappers. Place a won ton wrapper on a dry kitchen towel, brush very lightly with beaten egg wash, place one filling ball in the center, lay a second wrapper on top and slowly pressing the two wrappers from the center towards the outer edge eliminating any air pockets. Crimp edges with the tines of a fork. Allow to set, do not cook right away,. The edges need to seal and melt together. If you choose one wrapper per ravioli use the same egg wash method and fold over one corner to the opposite corner to make a triangle. These freeze very well in an airtight container for up to 4 weeks. When ready to use just toss them in a pot of boiling salted water and cook for 3 minutes (5 minutes if using frozen ravioli)
LEMON CREAM SAUCE
1 small shallot, finely diced
4 Tbl. butter
1 cup chicken broth
1 medium lemon zested
1/2 tea. salt
pinch black pepper
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 egg yolk
Sauté shallot in butter in a sauce pan, add chicken stock, lemon zest, salt and pepper. Simmer two minutes for the lemon zest to flavor the broth. In a separate small bowl beat cream and egg yolk until completely combined. Temper egg and cream mixture by slowly adding 4 tablespoons of the hot broth 1 tablespoon at a time while stirring to heat egg preventing curdling. Then add egg/cream mixture to broth. Continue stirring on medium heat until slightly thickened to your liking, about 3-5 minutes. Serve with cooked pumpkin ravioli.
NOTE: If you like a thicker sauce, make a slurry of 1 teaspoon corn starch and 1 tablespoon cold milk or cold water, add to sauce and boil for 1 minute.