naked ravioli or ‘gnudi’ as they say in Italy – easier than you think

naked ravioli/gnudi l bitebymichelle.com

NAKED RAVIOLI or as they say in Italian, ‘gnudi’ has a bad rap.

It has a reputation for being difficult to make, presumably, because it has no covering. The truth of the matter is naked ravioli is a snap to make. So you ask, why isn’t it on your menu. Simple. Naked ravioli is the perfect ‘fancy’ pasta to make at home but not so good for a restaurant. It needs to be cooked and eaten the same day it’s made. It doesn’t lend itself to any sort of preliminary prep which basically rules it out as a static on my menu.

However, if you’re looking for a dinner party show-stopper, look no further. Rich, creamy, succulent little balls of deliciousness topped off with your favorite sauce or just tossed with brown butter and sage. I linked to some old posts with really bad photos but the recipes are yummy.

I recommend serving your naked ravioli as its own course. It’s too lovely to clutter up with competing components on the plate. Also, resist the urge to over serve. Five to seven pieces is a generous helping; enough to satisfy but leaving you wanting another bite.

I made this batch of naked ravioli a few weeks ago when I was in Calgary visiting my daughter Meggie. She’s not coming home this Christmas so, before things heated up at the restaurant, I spent a week catching as many kisses as I could from my grandson.

Meg loves to cook, is a fantastic cook but when ‘mama’ is in her home she happily steps aside. There’s nothing we enjoy more than being together in the kitchen, Coen playing happily under our feet, she and I sipping a little wine and solving our world’s problems.

Funny how food preparation can have such a relaxing effect on the hands involved. Clearly, you have to love to cook or it could be the exact opposite – complete stress. Happily, for me and all three of my girls, preparing a meal together gives us the time to ease into conversations that need more than a text or a five minute phone call. Try it sometime. Invite someone to cook this naked ravioli with you and let the magic happen.

NAKED RAVIOLI / GNUDI

  • 1 1/2 cup ricotta
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan
  • 1 egg
  • 2 yolks
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • Semolina flour

THE STEPS

  1. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the first 7 ingredients.
  2. Add the flour, using a rubber spatula. Add more flour if necessary. The batter should be sticky, not wet and loose. You want this mixture to be able to hold its shape.
  3. Using a small scoop, shape the ricotta mixture into little balls and drop them on a baking sheet heavily sprinkled with semolina flour.
  4. Cover with a dry tea towel and place in the fridge for four hours.
  5. Put a pot of salted water on to boil to cook the gnudi. When the water is boiling, drop the gnudi in. They are done when they float to the top.
  6. Have your sauce warm and waiting. Drop the cooked naked raviloi into the sauce, give it a toss then serve.

THE LOVE: Line a small colander with cheesecloth and let your ricotta drain for a couple of ours or overnight. The drier your ricotta the lighter your naked ravioli.

Nice to be back.

Thanks for reading.