Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Tortellini with Creamy Tomato Sauce

Ahh, Giada.  I love her cookbooks.  Her recipes are usually quite good, when I can get past how overwhelming they sometimes seem.

This wasn't one that overwhelmed; it just looked good.  Everyone loved it in my house, and the leftover sauce (in the book, but not on the website) was excellent in the Crock Pot Lasagna I made that day.  Deliciousness!!  You really have to try the tomato sauce Giada listed in her book; it's incredible.

Tortellini with Creamy Tomato Sauce Source:  Giada's Family Dinners by Giada Di Laurentiis via FoodNetwork.com


Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add about 1/4 cup olive oil to the water to help prevent pasta from sticking. Add the ravioli and cook until al dente, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Drain the ravioli, reserving 1/2 cup of the cooking water. Toss the ravioli with the remaining oil to coat.
Meanwhile, bring the marinara sauce to a simmer in a medium saucepan over medium heat, whisking often. Whisk in the ricotta and enough reserved cooking water to thin the sauce to desired consistency. For a thicker sauce, use less pasta water; for a thinner sauce, add more water. Return the sauce to a simmer. Season the sauce to taste with salt and pepper.
Spoon 3 tablespoons of sauce over the bottom of each of 6 bowls. Arrange the ravioli over the sauce.Drizzle the remaining sauce over the ravioli. Sprinkle with the Parmesan and the basil, and serve.

Quick Marinara Sauce, from Giada's Family Dinners by Giada Di Laurentiis

2 – 28 oz. cans whole tomatoes in juice
1 bunch fresh basil, stemmed
½ c. good quality olive oil
2 small onions, minced
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 t. dried oregano
1 t. sugar
1 Parmesan rind (if you can find it; ask the ladies in the cheese department if they have some stashed away – optional)
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
In a blender, puree the tomatoes with their juice and the basil until almost smooth.  Set the tomato puree aside.
Heat the oil in a large, heavy saucepan over medium heat.  Add the onions and garlic and sauté until very tender, about 12 minutes.  Stir in the tomato puree, oregano, sugar and optional Parmesan rind.  Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat.  Decrease the heat to medium and continue simmering until the sauce thickens slightly, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes (I usually let mine go about an hour).  Season the sauce to taste with salt and pepper.  Discard Parmesan rind.
The sauce can be made 1 day ahead.  If storing for future use, cool, then cover and refrigerate or freeze.

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