There is a pretty good chance that the number one food being eaten on Valentine’s Day is some sort of pasta. Trust me when I say that this heart shaped ravioli will become a recipe you make year after year. Pasta is one of our favourite, super delicious family friendly meatless recipes to make.
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There is something lovely about pasta. Perhaps it is the time and love that goes into making the sauce or perhaps it is comforting and cozy it is to eat. Whatever the reason, one of the easiest ways to show your family you love them is to make them a Valentine’s day pasta dinner. Around here our family’s favourite homemade dish is pasta.
We transformed boring old ravioli into Valentine heart shaped ravioli. We are so excited to share our full step-by-step instructions and recipe for heart shaped ravioli, stuffed with ricotta and spinach. Let’s get started with making our favourite ravioli recipe and make things a little more lovely with the help of a simple heart shaped cookie cutter.
How to Make Heart Shaped Ravioli
4 large eggs
3 1/2 cups of all purpose flour
1/2 tsp olive oil
300 grams traditional ricotta
5 ounces spinach
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
For the pesto
2 handfuls of basil
1-2 cloves of garlic
1/4 cup of pine nuts (I actually have almonds in the picture because we ran out of pine nuts!)
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
2-3 tsp of olive oil
salt and pepper
How to make a spinach and ricotta ravioli filling
When everything has combined, set the ravioli filling aside to be used in the pasta.
How to make a classic basil pesto
Combine the basil, garlic, cheese and pine nuts in a food processor. Pulse until ingredients are finely chopped and combined.
Now it is time to make the heart shaped ravioli pasta
Mound the flour on a clean surface, like a volcano. Dig a “well” in the middle of the flour.
Crack the eggs into the well. Add the oil and a pinch of salt.
Use a fork to beat the eggs and begin pulling the flour into the eggs. Continue mixing together the flour and eggs. Eventually, your hands will be the best tool to use for mixing the dough. Now, don’t worry if the wall of flour breaks and your eggs start to run out, just pull the egg back and add some flour to them. Keep mixing the eggs with the flour…it’s a messy, but fun operation.
Once the dough comes together, knead the pasta dough until it forms a silky and smooth dough…about 10 minutes of kneading.
Once the dough has rested, use a sharp knife to divide the dough into 4 portions and use a pasta machine to form sheets of pasta for the ravioli.
Feed pasta, one quarter at a time, into machine starting with the smallest number setting (the largest opening size), gradually moving to about a number 6 (smaller opening size)…it should be thin enough to see your hand through the pasta sheets. If you are familiar with making pasta, ravioli sheets need to be slightly thinner than fettuccini or other long pasta, because they are two layers of pasta.
Heart Shaped Ravioli and Basil Pesto
For the pasta
- 4 large eggs
- 3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp olive oil extra virgin
- flour for dusting
For the filling
- 300 g traditional ricotta cheese
- 5 oz spinach
- salt and pepper
For the pasta
- Mound the flour on a clean surface, like a volcano. Dig a "well" in the middle of the flour
- Crack the eggs into the well. Add the oil.
- Use a fork to beat the eggs and begin pulling flour into the eggs. Continue mixing together the flour and eggs.
- Once the dough comes together, knead until it forms a silky and smooth dough...about 10 minutes.
- Wrap in plastic wrap and let rest at room temperature for 30 minutes to an hour.
- Once rested, divide dough in 4 portions and use pasta machine to form sheets of pasta for the ravioli.
- Feed pasta into machine starting with the smallest number setting (the largest opening size), gradually moving to about a number 6 (smaller opening size)...it should be thin enough to see your hand through the pasta sheets.
For the filling
- Finely chop spinach in a food processor and add to ricotta cheese, salt and pepper in a medium sized bowl.
- Set aside to be used in pasta.
- Find the step by step instructions for how to create the pasta is below...
How to make the heart shaped ravioli pasta
The pasta recipe is the easy part, the slightly more challenging part is making the ravioli. However, after a little practice creating the little pockets of pasta it becomes much easier. Here’s how we make our ravioli.
(1) Lay out the sheet of pasta and use a heart shaped cookie cutter to cut out an even number of hearts…you will need one for the top and one for the bottom of each ravioli.
(2) Next, scoop 1/2 tsp of the spinach ricotta filling in the centre of each heart.
(2) Using a pastry brush (or your fingers) paint water around the edge of pasta that has the filling.
(3) Place the second heart over the bottom heart and gently (but don’t be afraid of ripping the pasta, it’s strong) press the sides together. Press and pinch around the filling, you don’t want any air bubbles around the filling. At this point, I pick up the ravioli and pinch it between my fingers and thumb…completing the seal.
(4) Finally, my daughter used the rounded side of a smaller heart shaped cookie cutter (be sure not to use the sharp side of the cookie cutter) to gently press around the filling…further sealing the filling inside the pasta and completing the heart shape.
(5) Now the pasta can be set aside to dry on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet, frozen or boiled and eaten right away.
(6) To dry or freeze, place in a single layer on parchment paper lined baking sheet. Place the baking sheet in the freezer or a cool dry spot. Be careful with the filled pasta…you don’t want to leave it out of refrigeration too long or the cheese will spoil.
How to cook heart-shaped ravioli
To cook the heart shaped pasta. Dump the pasta into a large pot of well salted, boiling water. Stir the pasta, so that it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pot. The pasta will take about 3 minutes to cook – depending on the thickness of your pasta. Strain the pasta.
Toss the warm pasta with in the basil pesto. Alternately, this pasta would taste great with a light butter and garlic sauce too. Don’t forget a sprinkle of freshly grated parmesan cheese.
Once you try making this heart shaped ravioli you may get addicted to making stuffed pastas. It isn’t nearly as difficult as you might think. This heart shaped ravioli is the perfect Valentine’s Day pasta recipe to make for the ones you love this Valentine’s Day.
Cut and shape the heart shaped pasta with heart shaped cookie cutters.
Or, you could use this well reviewed Marcato hand crank pasta machine
Another cool tool that you could use is Paderno’s heart shaped ravioli cutter
Check out our other Valentine’s Day recipes and crafts…
Have fun building a graham cracker love shack with the kids
Check out our full day of Valentine’s Day recipes; breakfast, lunch & dinner
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