This recipe developed out of my family’s love for spinach-filled lasagna, and my decision to come up with a more portable, portionable version of the flavors. I still make lasagna now and then, but these little ravioli are so easy and fast! I form a whole mess of them, and flash-freeze in a single layer (no ravioli touching another), then bag them for future cooking (just drop, frozen, in boiling water until they float again, about 3 minutes)
Ravioli need a fresh egg noodle as a wrapper. To make this a nearly-instant gratification dish, I use packaged won-ton or pot sticker wrappers from the refrigerated section of the produce department. It’s an Asian egg noodle, rather than Italian, but my tastebuds don’t really care. They’re a bit rebellious, too. I can get these noodle wrappers in a package of 60 for under $2; the recipe quantities will fill up to 120 ravioli, depending how fat you like each one.
In a mixing bowl, combine:
1 small container ricotta cheese (I use full-fat, but lower-fat works fine.) I prefer ricotta to cottage cheese, as the latter is too wet for the recipe to work well. I think the small ricotta size is about 8 ounces; it’s under $2 at our WinCo store.
1/3 cup fine grated Parmesan or other salty smelly hard Italian cheese
1/3 cup fine grated Mozarella cheese
A few grinds of black pepper
Paste garlic, to taste. (I’ve also used garlic powder. Never use garlic salt.) You’ll be able to taste and adjust the mixture.
8 to 10 ounces ch0pped, frozen spinach. Thaw and squeeze well to remove most of the moisture. You can also give this a bit more of a chop if you like; small pieces work best.
Blend the ingredients well, adding more garlic and pepper to taste. There is no raw egg in the mix, so you’re not likely to contract any horrible diseases. Just don’t drool in the bowl. It will be smelling pretty good at this point.
Working in batches of 8 to 12 wrappers, brush the edges of each with a bit of water. Place a 1/2 teaspoon or so of filling in the center, and fold the wrapper over, pressing to seal the edges. You may adjust the filling amount to your own preference.
Lay the completed ravioli on a lightly floured baking sheet, not touching others, and either cover with a towel until you’re ready to boil them, or flash-freeze them and bag for later cooking.
To cook, drop them 5 or 6 at a time into boiling water (don’t crowd them.) When they pop to the top and are hot through, they’re done and ready to skim off and serve. They’re great with either a tomato-based sauce, or a white cream sauce. The spinach flavor is quite mild, and combined with the dairy, you’re getting a walloping load of calcium and iron.
Homemade ravioli. You’ll never look at Chef Boyardee again.