Friday, July 11, 2008

A Failure of Ravioli

This is the second post today, but I just have to write. The boys are downstairs playing on the Wii; my husband is doing the dishes. I am in mourning. My homemade ravioli was a failure.

I've had such good cooking zen lately. I even stopped myself in the nick of time before trying out a shrimp recipe that was doomed to die on the plate. It was a cold shrimp and rice salad, made with zucchini and rice wine vinegar. I've fallen for a version of this over and over again, forgetting every time that I don't like the taste of cold pickled zucchini--and who eats zucchini with shrimp anyway? This time, I bought all the ingredients, and then the morning of the planned dinner, I snapped out of it. I read over the recipe and thought, No! No! Don't do this to yourself and your family and all those innocent little shrimp! I quickly switched gears, bought a little chorizo sausage, and made a great shrimp and sausage dish. I felt like freakin' Julia Child.

Pride goeth before a fall, isn't what they say? Yes, I was feeling cocky today when I thought, 'I'll make ravioli. Didn't I make wonderful fettuccine last week? Am I not the diva of freshly made pasta?'

The answer to that, Dear Reader, is a resounding No. The ravioli came out thick and flabby. It wasn't pretty. The only thing to do with is was cut away the pasta around the very center and eat what was left of the prosciutto-wrapped mozzarella that didn't leak out during the cooking process. To add insult to injury, it took an awfully long time to make it. I used five very expensive organic farmer's market eggs, and the whole process left the kitchen a wreck.

The sauce I made to serve with it, zucchini fresh from the garden sauteed with garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and basil, was very nice. The bread was pretty and freshly baked. My husband was complimentary (believe me, he was being kind), and Jack said he actually sort of liked it, and he really liked the salad I made. That's when you know you've really blown it--when even your nine-year-old realizes you could use a little cheering up .

So now I'm exhausted and my clothes are covered in pasta dough and flour. I'm mad at all those books I read at the beach about life in Tuscany and Provence, books that make you feel the whole purpose of life is making your own pasta and eating lots of cheese, books in which there are no children and the adults sit out in the garden drinking wine for hours. What was I thinking about? Ravioli? Moi? Not in this lifetime, girls.


Robert said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Left-Handed Housewife said...

In case anyone's curious, the comment I deleted was an ad in disguise. It must be the latest marketing thing.

Tracy said...

Oooohhhhh you poor thing. How disappointing.

I was watching a cooking show recently where they made ravioli. Both the chefs commented about thick ravioli being awful and they rolled the pastry around the edge to be the thickness of just one piece of dough instead of the two.

Something to store away for another time.

Left-Handed Housewife said...

Yes, that was definitely my mistake--not figuring that the edges would have the thickness of two sheets, not just one.

I think I need more pasta-making experience before I try anything else with filling. Jamie Oliver's tortellini look so wonderful, but I don't trust myself to try making them for another decade or so ...

Tracy said...

Have a go at gnocchi. That's so easy I get the kids to shape the little dumplings. I also have a recipe for ricotta gnocchi that is soft and silky yet still very satisfying.