Tomato Eggplant “Sun” Ravioli
A modern take on eggplant parmesan, these sun-shaped tomato eggplant ravioli are the perfect way to use up those end-of-summer nightshades. Each bite boasts the flavors of rich and smoky eggplant, contrasted by the bright and sweet notes of fresh cherry tomatoes.
With the help of our jagged-edged round ravioli stamp, we were able to create this cheerful “sun” shape but you could just as easily use another ravioli stamp or simple round cookie cutter to make these.
Tomato Eggplant "Sun" Ravioli
Prep time: 60 Minutes
Cook time: 10 Minutes
For the filling:
1 large eggplant
1/3 cup whole milk ricotta cheese
3 tablespoons Parmigiano Reggiano, grated
Kosher salt, q.b.
Black pepper, q.b.
For the pasta:
360 grams 00 flour
2 tablespoons double concentrated tomato paste
For the sauce:
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 garlic clove, peeled
1 cup mixed cherry, grape, and sunburst tomatoes, cut in half
Kosher salt, q.b.
5-6 basil leaves
To make the filling:
Preheat oven to 325ºF.
Place ricotta in a cheesecloth over a strainer with something heavy on top to remove any excess liquid. Let drain for at least 30 minutes.
Cut eggplant in half lengthwise. Using the tip of your knife, score the fleshy surface with a crisscross pattern. This will help release steam during the roasting process.
Generously salt eggplant and brush with olive oil. Roast for 30 minutes, or until the eggplant flesh is soft.
Let cool for about 10 minutes. Scoop out the flesh and add it to a blender along with the ricotta and grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese. Blend until smooth. Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed.
Scoop filling into a sealable plastic bag or pastry bag. Store in the fridge until ready to fill the pasta.
To make the pasta:
Prepare one batch of the fresh egg pasta, substituting one egg for 2 tablespoons of double concentrated tomato paste. Cover in plastic wrap and let rest for at least 30 minutes at room temperature. If making ahead of time, keep the dough in the fridge for up to 48 hours. Let it come up to room temp before rolling out.
Line two large baking sheets with a tea towel or parchment paper. Sprinkle with flour.
Unwrap dough and divide into quarters. Remove one quarter, then set aside and wrap up the rest of the dough to keep it from drying out.
Roll out your first piece of dough into a rectangle, about 2 inches wide and 3 inches long.
Set your hand-cranked pasta machine to the widest setting. Feed the rectangle piece of dough through the machine. Adjust the setting to the second widest. Feed the dough through again, cranking at an even pace. Adjust the setting one more time to the third widest setting and feed the dough once again.
At this point, take the dough and fold it onto itself three times, like a trifold brochure. Adjust the setting on the pasta machine to the widest setting once again. Feed the dough through each setting, going from the widest all the way to the thinnest.
Using a ravioli stamp, cut out circles of dough. Pipe about a teaspoon of the filling in the center of half of the circles. Use the remaining circles to top each piece. Gently seal the ravioli with your fingertips, removing any air bubbles as best you can. Set aside each finished raviolo on the floured baking sheet.
To make the sauce:
In a large pan, heat olive oil and garlic on low heat until garlic is fragrant. Add cherry tomatoes and a generous pinch of salt. Cook on medium-low heat until tomatoes have softened and their juices more concentrated. Add fresh basil. Taste and adjust salt as needed.
Remove from heat and add the tomato mixture to blender or food processor (I find that a high-powered blender like a Vitamix gets the smoothest sauce). Puree until smooth and velvety. Return sauce to pan.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil and generously salt it.
Cook ravioli in salted boiling water for about 3 minutes, or until al dente. Depending on the size of your water pot, you may need to cook the ravioli in two batches to keep them from sticking.
Gently remove ravioli with a slotted spoon and add directly to tomato sauce. Cook on low heat for 1-2 minutes, carefully coating each ravioli with sauce. Add a bit of pasta water if the sauce seems to thick.
Divide ravioli among plates and serve warm with freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano and basil leaves.