Pumpkin ravioli was the first recipe idea that came to my mind after I found an unopened can of organic pumpkin sitting in my pantry, leftover, forgotten and unused from this past Thanksgiving / Christmas season. I’ve already posted two ravioli recipes on this site, and both of them involved cheese and greens. I thought it would be a nice departure to make ravioli without any cheese in the filling – somewhat different from the norm. The use of the brown butter and toasted pecans as a ravioli sauce is also not as common as the white cream sauce or the red tomato based sauce that usually accompany ravioli.
To make ravioli filling, I just used organic pumpkin puree straight from the can, with only a couple of spices added, and the filling was more runny than what I was used to. I used my ravioli mold again and was pleasantly surprised how well the mold worked (once again!) even with a more watery and runny ravioli filling, such as pumpkin puree. Thanks to the mold, I was able to make perfect shapes, and none of ravioli burst or opened up during boiling/cooking. It’s key, though, not to overfill the holes in the ravioli mold with too much pumpkin filling – put just enough filling so that it’s at the same level as the top of the mold.
Brown butter with balsamic vinegar and a small amount of brown sugar not surprisingly turned out to be an amazing sauce for ravioli filled with pumpkin-nutmeg-brown-sugar filling, and toasted pecans scattered on top made this dish absolutely perfect. I beg you – please make this! It’s so good! I’ve had these ravioli as a stand-alone dinner entry, I’ve also had it with seared salmon, which was an amazing combination.
Now, if I only knew what to do with the 2nd unopened can of organic pumpkin still in my pantry….
Pumpkin ravioli with brown butter sauce and pecans
Prep time: 1 hour 30 min
Adapted from Epicurious.
Makes 24 ravoili (2 molds)
Ingredients for ravioli dough from scratch (makes 12 ravioli using mold, so make 2 batches for 24 ravioli):
- 1 1/4 cup flour
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup hot water
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
Ingredients for pumpkin ravioli filling (makes 24 ravioli):
- 1/2 can pumpkin organic
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- salt and pepper
Ingredients for brown butter sauce:
- 1 stick butter
- 2 and 1/2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 and 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1/4 cup chopped toasted pecans
To make ravioli dough:
1) Mix flour with salt.
2) Stir water with egg until well mixed.
3) In a bowl, combine flour and egg-water mixture together and mix until well incorporated. Knead the dough until well-textured and firm. The dough should not be too wet or too sticky. It should only stick to itself, but not to your hands. It should not be too dry, either. Make the dough into a ball or disk, wrap with plastic wrap. Let the dough stand for 1 hour at room temperature before using. This allows gluten to work.
4) This amount of dough enough to make dough for 12 raviolis, using the mold (ravioli mold makes 12 ravioli). If you need to make 24 ravioli, make a second batch of this dough.
To make pumpkin ravioli filling and assemble:
1) If your pumpkin puree or mashed pumpkin is too watery, drain the pumpkin using a paper towel and a mesh strainer to get rid of any unnecessary liquid (thank you to one of my readers for the tip! ).
2) Mix pumpkin puree with brown sugar and nutmeg. Season filling with salt and pepper.
3) Unwrap a batch of ravioli dough from plastic, divide in 2 equal parts. Flour working area. Roll out each part of pasta dough very thinly, on a floured surface, using a roller. Make sure to flour the upper portion of pasta dough and the roller to avoid sticking. Lift the rolled dough several times during rolling to make sure it doesn’t stick to the counter, and flour working surface with more flour, if necessary.
4) Flour the ravioli mold. After you have rolled the 2 portions of dough very thinly, place first layer of dough on the ravioli mold, so that it covers all 12 holes.
5) Place a small portion of ravioli filling into each indentation, making sure not to overfill. The filling should be at the same level or lower as the flat part of the mold. Place second layer of pasta dough on top of filled ravioli.
6) Using a roller pin, roll across the mold and along the edges to separate ravioli. As you roll the pin, it also removes all air from ravioli, which is very important for ravioli success. By now you should have extra dough hanging off the outside 4 edges of ravioli mold – carefully separate it. Continue rolling the pin along the inside edges of 12 raviolis to separate them from one another: you could also use your fingers to press across the edges to separate ravioli.
7) Flip ravioli mold to release ravioli. Bring a large pot of water to boil. Boil ravioli for 5 minutes, drain and set aside – to be used with sauce below.
8) Or, alternatively, if you’re not using ravioli right away, place them on a plate or baking sheet in the freezer to freeze. After they are frozen, place them in a plastic bag and keep frozen until needed.
If you’re more of a visual person and would like photos that walk you through on how to use this ravioli mold, I have a very detailed tutorial-recipe with photos on how to make ravioli using this mold and another very detailed recipe, also with photos, describing how to use the same ravioli mold.
To make brown butter sauce:
1) Preheat oven to 350. Toast pecans for 10 minutes until slightly browned, let them cool off and then chop them finely.
2) Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook until butter just begins to brown, about 4 minutes. Do not overcook or butter will burn. Remove from heat. Mix in balsamic vinegar and brown sugar. Add ravioli to the hot butter sauce, spoon sauce over to coat ravioli. Transfer to plates. Sprinkle with pecans.