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Featured Recipe September 2, 2011

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Executive Chefs Nicola & Fabrizio Carro from Quattro



1 Pasta

Ingredients

  • 1¾ cups all-purpose flour
  • 6 large egg yolks
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ cup cornmeal (sprinkled on cookie sheet for coating)

 

Preparation

Use a mixer to prepare the dough by mixing the flour and the eggs together. Spilt the dough in half and then divide into two or three pieces. Run the separated dough through a pasta machine, making sheets that are at least five inches wide (size will vary based on pasta machine). It’s important that the pasta sheet is thin enough so that you can see your fingers through it, but not so thin that it's translucent. Lay them flat on a cookie sheet that is covered with a damp paper towel and cover the sheet with a second damp paper towel so that they do not dry out.



2 Filling

Ingredients

  • 3 Spanish onions, sliced
  • 2 lbs flat iron, cubed
  • 2 Tbsp. Italian olive oil
  • 1 bottle of Barbera wine
  • 1-2 large carrots, diced small
  • 1-2 stalks celery, diced small
  • 1 fresh bay leaf
  • 1 sprig sage
  • ½ cup Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, grated
  • ½ stick of butter
  • Salt and pepper to taste

 

Preparation

In a large sauté pan with olive oil, cook onions over low heat for 10-15 minutes. Add the meat, carrots, celery, bay leaf and sage, and allow to cook for 45 minutes. Add the wine, cover with a lid and simmer for two hours. Once meat is cooked, remove meat and veggies with slotted spoon and transfer to food processor; grind until fine. Continue to cook the liquid until it is reduced in half. Remove bay leaf and add ground meat back to liquid. Season with salt and pepper, and stir in butter and cheese until smooth. Place the agnolotti filling in a pastry bag fitted with a half inch plain tip.

 



3 Sauce

Ingredients

  • 2 oz butter
  • ½ teaspoon cloves
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 lb lean beef
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons tomato sauce
  • 2-3 cups beef or chicken broth to taste
  • 7 oz spinach, blanched and well drained
  • 1 sprig rosemary
  • 1 egg yolk
  • ½ cup Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, grated
  • Nutmeg to taste
  • Salt and pepper to taste

 

Preparation 

Place a saucepan over medium heat. Add butter and melt, add cloves and onion and cook until they start to brown. Add the meat and turn heat down to low. Brown on all sides, then dust with flour and season with salt. Add the tomato sauce and enough broth to completely cover the meat; then cook over low heat until the meat is soft, but not falling apart. Remove pan from heat.

Take meat from sauce and place in food processor with spinach and rosemary, chop well. Transfer to a medium bowl and stir in an egg yolk, a generous amount of grated Parmigiano Reggiano, a pinch of pepper and a dusting of nutmeg. Add back to pan and stir well.



4 Plating

Shape

Starting at one end, place the thumb and forefinger of each hand together as if you were going to pinch something. Holding your fingers vertically and leaving about one inch of space between your two hands, pinch the filling in one inch increments, making about ¾ inch of "pinched" area between each pocket of filling. It is important to leave this much "pinched" area between the agnolotti, to ensure the seal stays intact.

Set the pasta down and run a crimped pastry wheel along the top edge of the folded-over dough, separating the strip of filled pockets from the remainder of the pasta sheet. Don't cut too close to the filling, or you risk breaking the seal. Separate the individual agnolotti by cutting the center of each pinched area, rolling the pastry wheel away from you. Working quickly, place the agnolotti on a baking sheet dusted with a thin layer of cornmeal, which will help prevent sticking. Don't let the agnolotti touch each other, or they may stick together.

 

Fill

Have a large pot of lightly salted water boiling. Work with one sheet of pasta at a time, keeping the remaining sheets covered. Work quickly, as fresh pasta will dry out.

Lay the pasta sheet horizontally on a lightly floured surface. Trim the edges so they are straight. Pipe a "tube" of filling across the bottom of the pasta sheet, leaving a ¾ inch border of pasta along the left, right, and bottom edges.

Pull the bottom edge of the pasta up and over the filling. Seal the agnolotti by carefully molding the pasta over the filling and pressing lightly dab with your index finger to seal the edge of the dough to the pasta sheet. Don't drag your finger along the dough to seal, or you risk ripping the dough. When it is sealed, there should be about a half inch of excess dough visible along the tube of filling (where you sealed it). Be certain that you are sealing tightly while pressing out any pockets of air. Seal the left and right ends of the dough.

 

Serve

Place dusted agnolotti in boiling water immediately and cook for five minutes. Reheat sauce over medium low heat, adding tablespoons of broth if too thick. Remove pasta using a slotted spoon and toss into the sauce. Stir in 1½ oz of melted butter and a good amount of grated cheese. 


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