Pork, Apple, and Sage Ravioli with Garlic Butter Sauce

You know that saying, when life give you lemons make lemonade? Sounds simple, doesn’t it?

Well. I’ve quickly learned that cooking isn’t just about the ingredients and following a recipe. Because if it were, my boyfriend and I would have successfully been able to make homemade ravioli. We have made countless attempts. To be fair, none of them have blatantly failed… Sometimes the pasta dough was too thick, other times the filling was undercooked or spewing out the sides.

Despite all these semi-successes (not semi-failures, I’m a glass half full kinda gal), we were still determined to master these fricken noodles. SO. We floured up my pasta machine, bought the necessary ingredients, and decided we’ll give it one last try.

And wouldn’t you know it? We still screwed it up. I don’t know how. I don’t know why. But our pasta dough was too thin this time, basically turning into a water-y mush when cooked. The filling for this particular recipe is to die for — We cooked it in advance and I was basically just eating it with a spoon while we were working on rolling out the pasta dough.

Because this filling and garlic butter sauce is so good, I wanted to share it with you all! May the ravioli odds be ever in your favor.

Pork, Apple, and Sage Ravioli with Garlic Butter Sauce: Serves 4

Ingredients for Ravioli Dough:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 large eggs, plus 1 for egg wash
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Cornmeal, for dusting

Instructions for Ravioli Dough:

  • To make the pasta dough: In an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook*, combine the flour and salt. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, and continue to mix. Drizzle in 1 tablespoons of the olive oil and continue to incorporate all the flour until it forms a ball. Sprinkle some flour on work surface, knead and fold the dough until elastic and smooth, this should take about 10 minutes. Brush the surface with the remaining olive oil and wrap the dough in plastic wrap; let rest for about 30 minutes to allow the gluten to relax.
  • Alternatively if you don’t have an electric mixer: Combine the flour and salt on a flat work surface; shape into a mound and make a well in the center. Add the eggs and 1 tablespoon of the olive oil to the well and lightly beat with a fork. Gradually draw in the flour from the inside wall of the well in a circular motion. Use 1 hand for mixing and the other to protect the outer wall. Continue to incorporate all the flour until it forms a ball. Continue as directed above.
  • Cut the ball of dough in 1/2, cover and reserve the piece you are not immediately using to prevent it from drying out. Dust the counter and dough with a little flour. Press the dough into a rectangle and roll it through a pasta machine, 2 or 3 times, at widest setting. Pull and stretch the sheet of dough with the palm of your hand as it emerges from the rollers. Reduce the setting and crank the dough through again, 2 or 3 times. Continue tightening until the machine is at the narrowest setting; the dough should be paper-thin, about 1/8-inch thick (you should be able to see your hand through it.). Dust the sheets of dough with flour as needed.
  • Beat 1 egg with 1 tablespoon of water to make an egg wash. Dust the counter and sheet of dough with flour, lay out the long sheet of pasta, and brush the top surface with the egg wash, which acts as a glue. Drop tablespoons of your favorite filling on 1/2 of the pasta sheet, about 2- inches apart. Fold the other 1/2 over the filling like a blanket. With an espresso cup or fingers, gently press out air pockets around each mound of filling. Use a sharp knife to cut each pillow into squares and crimp the 4 edges with the tins of a fork to make a tight seal. Dust the ravioli and a sheet pan with cornmeal to prevent the pasta from sticking and lay them out to dry slightly while assembling the rest.
  • Cook the ravioli in plenty of boiling salted water for 4 minutes; they’ll float to the top when ready, so be careful not to overcrowd the pot. Lift the ravioli from water with a large strainer or slotted spoon. Bath the ravioli in your favorite sauce to lightly coat and serve.

Ingredients for Pork, Apple, and Sage Filling:

1/2 oz ghee or clarified unsalted butter

  • 1 tablespoon fresh sage leaves, finely chopped
  • About 20 sage leaves
  • 2 good pork sausages, skins removed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Freshly ground black pepper and sea salt
  • 1/2 onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 apple (such as Cox’s), peeled, cored and finely chopped
  • 1 large organic egg, lightly beaten

Instructions for Pork, Apple, and Sage Filling:

  • Heat the ghee or clarified butter in a small pan, add the whole sage leaves and cook for 3-4 minutes, or until the leaves look crispy. Set aside and keep warm.
  • Heat the oil in a frying pan and add the onions. Fry for about 5 minutes, or until soft and melting. Add the apple and fry for a further 4-5 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the chopped sage, sausage meat, and seasoning and mix well to combine.
  • Lightly dust a sheet of greaseproof paper with semolina and place the pasta rounds on it. Place 1-2 heaped teaspoons of mixture in the middle of 12 of the rounds and brush each edge with beaten egg. Place the remaining rounds on top and pinch the edges firmly together to make 12 ravioli.
  • Bring a large deep-sided pan of salted water to a boil, add the pasta and cook for 4-5 minutes or until al dente. Drain the ravioli well and toss in the sage butter. Serve on warm plates, sprinkle with black pepper and garnish with the sage leaves.

Ingredients for Garlic Butter Sauce:

  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 1 clove crushed garlic
  • 1/4 tablespoon dried basil
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano

Instructions for Garlic Butter Sauce:

  • In a small sauce pan melt butter, add garlic and sauté until cooked.
  • Add oregano and basil, stir.
  • Serve warm.

The ones in the picture don’t look half bad, do they! I fished out the good ones just for you. When all is said and done though, it doesn’t particularly matter that these raviolis  aren’t the fairest in the land. We had a blast making these! That being said, I think we’ve given up on homemade ravioli – unless anyone out there has any suggestions! So I guess the moral of the story is… when life gives you lemons, it’s okay to say “No thanks, I’m going to Panera.” Happy eating,  y’all!

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