Thursday, July 30, 2009

Vegan homemade tortellini with two fillings

Summer, oh sweet summer! A lot of swimming, traveling and porch hanging has been made. And of course a lot of cooking. We'll try to catch up on some of the most successful experiments. Starting with this amazing freshly made pasta.

If you want the pasta to be really easy to work with you need to prepare it in advance. We made two portions of pasta dough to observe the difference. The first dough was made 48 hours prior to the cooking, the second dough was made 5 hours prior to the cooking. The first dough was a lot easier to stretch and shape. The second dough was also fine but demands more patience not to over stretch it. Our recommendations are to prepare it 24-48 hours in advance.


Durum wheat
Olive oil

For two persons it may be enough with 2 dl durum wheat, but i don't know exactly how much we made. Put wheat on a table or in a bowl. Add some salt and some olive oil and mix. Add a little water at a time and work into the dough. You want just enough water to make the dough complete and smooth to work with, without it getting sticky. Knead the dough hard for 10 to 15 minutes, then put it in a plastic bag and let it rest in the fridge until it's time to cook.

Vegan ricotta and spinach filling
shredded cheddar style sheese (or any other vegan cheese of your choice)
minced cashew nuts
spinach (we used frozen, chopped spinach, but i'm sure any spinach will do)
salt and pepper

Mix it all together in a bowl until you have a nice dough.

Portobello and basil filling

portobello mushroom
minced cashew nuts
salt and pepper

Chop and fry the portobello in olive oil and salt. Mix all ingredients in a blender.

Flatten the pasta dough very thinly using a baking roller. To make sure the dough doesn't stick to the table, flour lightly and flip the dough over a couple of times. It should be around one millimeter thick or so when done. Cut out squares in the size of 5 x 10 cm, put the filling on one side. Add a rather small amount of the filling and don't put it closer than 0,5 - 1 cm to the edge. Lightly wet the sides around the pasta square and then close it. Pinch around the edges with a fork to seal the little bastard.

The pasta dough should be kept in the plastic bag right up until the making to reduce the risk of dry pasta. Also, when filled, they should be boiled as soon as possible, and served and eaten as soon as possible after boiling. If you are making a big batch of 'em, you can keep them under a lightly moist kitchen towel during the making (before the boiling).

Bring a big pot of salted water to boil and drop them in. Go easy on them so they don't break open. Boil for 3-5 minutes. Done! Serve with your favorite tomato sauce and olive oil.