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Making Ravioli

Undoubtedly the most well-known filled pasta in Italy, ravioli can be found in different shapes with fillings of various flavors. Following are basic instructions for making ravioli. After cutting the ravioli, crimp the edges with the tines of a fork to add a decorative touch.

Making Ravioli

1. Place a 12-by-4 1/2-inch sheet of pasta on a lightly floured surface with the longest edge facing you. Fold the dough in half lengthwise, press gently to make a crease and then unfold the dough.

2. Place a scant 1 Tbs. of filling (about 2 tsp.) every
2 1/2 inches along the furthest edge of the pasta, about 1 1/2 inches in from the edge. Dip a finger in a small bowl of water and drag your finger around each mound of filling to moisten the pasta.

3. Fold the front edge of the dough over the mounds. Starting in the center, gently press and shape the dough around each mound, working out to the sides. To ensure that the pasta cooks evenly, make sure the air is pressed out and the filling is secured neatly in a circular mound in the pasta.

Making Ravioli

4. Use a sharp knife to cut the ravioli into 2-inch squares, or use a 2-inch round pastry cutter to cut the ravioli into circles. If desired, crimp the edges with the tines of a fork. Transfer the ravioli to a lightly floured sheet pan. Repeat with the remaining dough to make about 40 ravioli.

5. Refrigerate the ravioli for at least 2 hours before cooking. The ravioli can be wrapped tightly and refrigerated for 2 to 3 days or frozen for 4 to 6 weeks.

To cook, bring a large pot two-thirds full of water to a boil over high heat. Add 1 Tbs. salt and half of the ravioli and return to a boil, stirring gently. Cook until the ravioli float and are al dente (tender but firm to the bite), 30 seconds to 3 minutes, depending on the freshness of the pasta. Using a skimmer, transfer to paper towels to drain briefly, then put the ravioli in a warmed large, shallow bowl. Repeat with the remaining ravioli.