Kicking off the special 3 year blogaversary guest post series is my dear friend Trix. I know you are all familiar with Trixie’s blog Tasty Trix, and if you are not then you must live under a rock. Her friendship is one that I cherish, her blog posts and recipes ones that I very much look forward to, and her photography always makes my mouth water. I am so excited and honored to have her guest posting and celebrating with us. Please help me give Trixie a very welcome.
Virtual acquaintances come and go in the food blogging world, but just as in real life, a very small handful of people emerge as true friends. Even though I have never met her in person, Nancy is in this small group for me. We bonded over our shared love of animals in general, and dogs in particular. And anyone who loves dogs as much as I do is okay in my book.
So when she asked me to do a guest post to celebrate her three years as a food blogger, I was fully on board. She mentioned that I could use a dish from my archives, and so my mind immediately went to this one: a broccoli and provolone ravioli smothered in a rich pork ragu. I originally created the dish a year ago when I was challenged by a Philadelphia food blogger to come up with something based on iconic foods of her city. This is my riff on the roast suckling pig sandwich, the “Arista,” which you can get at Philly’s famed sandwich joint Paesano’s. I also drew on Philly’s rich Italian immigrant culture to come up with my dish.
Given that my post will be running around the time the U.S. celebrates Independence Day on July 4, I thought a melting pot dish that pays homage to Italian American cuisine, with a twist, would be the perfect thing to share with Nancy’s readers.
This is a dish to make on a weekend, as you’ll want to start the sauce first thing in the morning and let the delicious smell fill your house all day long.
For the sauce:
2 medium yellow onions, diced
3-4 ribs celery, diced
4 carrots, small dice
6 tablespoons olive oil
3 ounces chopped prosciutto
1 pound ground pork
1 pound sweet Italian sausage, removed from casing
1 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
1 28 ounce can San Marzano plum tomatoes
salt and pepper, to taste
In a large stockpot over medium heat, saute the onions, celery, and carrots in the olive oil. Add the prosciutto and a dash of salt and pepper. Next add the meat, but don’t let it brown – just cook until fragrant and no longer pink. Add both cans of tomatoes and give everything a stir. Bring the heat down to low and let simmer for hours, uncovered. Once the meat is cooked you can taste the sauce and add salt and pepper, but be stingy with it until the sauce is almost finished, as it will reduce throughout the day and concentrate the salt flavor.
Meanwhile, make the dough. You can use AP flour or, ideally, farina tipo “00.” You will need roughly 1-2 large eggs per cup of flour. I used 3 cups of flour and ended up needing 5 eggs. Make a well with the flour (add a good pinch of salt), put the eggs in the middle and mix until the dough comes together. Don’t knead for too long or the dough will get tough. I did a pictorial on it here. Let it rest in the fridge for at least an hour.
For the filling, blanch one large bunch of broccoli rabe for one minute in boiling salted water, and immediately plunge into ice water. Dry thoroughly and chop very finely. To this, add 2 ounces of grated sharp provolone, one beaten egg, and enough ricotta to hold everything together.
When you’re ready to make the ravioli, roll the dough out into thin sheets, and place one-inch balls of filling at even intervals. Fold the dough over the filling, and cut the ravioli to your desired size using either a ravioli cutter or a bench cutter and a fork. Refrigerate until ready to cook.
When it’s time to serve it up, boil the ravioli in salted water for just 3 minutes, top with sauce, grate a little sharp provolone on top, and make sure to pour yourself a glass of red wine.
Happy blogoversary, Nancy – here’s to many more years. Salut!
Salut and a million thanks Trixie. It has been an honor having you share this scrumptious recipe and I know we all can’t wait to try it.
I’d like to wish my American friends a very happy 4th of July. Have fun and be safe.
Recipe and images by Tasty Trix