July's Daring Cooks Challenge got me thinking a lot about homemade pasta. As soon as I read what the challenge was, I had several ideas, among them my Rainbow Pasta. Other ideas included "Modern Art-Style" Lasagna and Ravioli. I tried the former today but to get a good design with a 10-months old baby clinging to my leg, it was rather difficult to execute my ideas properly. The outcome was ok but not exactly what I had intended. Anyway, during the whole process some more pasta ideas popped up in my mind (probably other people did similar or the same things already). I thought I would try giant ravioli sometime time (when weather gets cooler), where make differently colored pasta doughs and then cut out animal shapes or vehicles or whatever else, using cookie cutters. So I will get some ravioli with animal designs or cars or.... Maybe that will make LittleGrouch more willing to at least try them. I just wanted to jot down this idea hoping it will help me to remember.
Today's dish was nice with a refreshing crunchy-lemony bite to it. The flavor is rather simple but very enjoyable. I don't know if I would do this dish as lasagna-style again, though. It sure looks nice on the plate, but it's not easy to eat and would taste just the same if you top a plate of pasta with the veggies and ricotta.
250 g all-purpose flour
1 egg yolk
flour for dustin
vegetables and ricotta
2 tsp olive oil
250 g cherry tomatoes, quartered, seeded (I just put the quarters in a strainer and squeezed the seeds out)
300 g zucchini, in 1 cm dice
2-3 sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp dried or 1 tbsp chopped fresh basil
salt and black pepper
250 g low fat ricotta
For the green pasta dough, mix together 50 g flour, egg yolk, a dash of salt and 1/2 tsp olive oil. If the dough is too dry to hold together, carefully add a few drops of water. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. For the white dough, mix together 200 g flour, 2 eggs, 2 tsp olive oil, and 4-5 dashes of salt until dough forms. Add a little water if needed. Wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Prepare your pasta maker and roll out dough as per instructions, dusting with flour if necessary. Cut part of the green dough with the spaghetti drums of the pasta maker. Lay out the white pasta and decorate with the green spaghettis. Using tiny cookie/aspic cutter, you can cut out shapes from the remaining green dough as well. Lightly press the green dough onto the white dough. Run the dough again through your pasta maker, then cut into rectangles. Spread the rectangles on a floured kitchen towel and let dry a bit while you prepare the sauce. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add tomatoes, zucchini, dried tomatoes, dried basil, lemon juice, salt and pepper. (If you are using fresh basil, add just before serving.) Cook 3-5 minutes. The zucchini should still be crunchy. Season to taste with salt, pepper and additional lemon juice if desired. Season ricotta with salt and pepper. To assemble the lasagna, layer the ingredients in the order of your choice on each plate, starting and ending with a lasagna sheet.