One of the things I love the most about Finland and Nordic countries is every man’s right, that is the right everyone possesses to roam and forage in the wilderness. I speak more in details about it in this article , but rest asssured that we use this opportunity to the full. There are so many goods that can be collected from the forest almost all year round, with spring and autumn as the peak seasons. In this blog’s section “Finnish nature presents us” you can already read many articles about it, and my plan is to expand the list next year. One of the plants we love to collect is nettle.
Nettle is something I’ve eaten all my life. It brings me back when, as a kid, my granny would pick nettle from near our vegetable garden and make soups out of them. Then, as a teenager, I continued eating a lot of nettle because of its high iron content. In Finland I started to use it in yet other ways, and my favorite is definitely the Nettle Ravioli.
I’ve always owned a pasta machine. In Italy, my granny used to have one with a motor, and we would make kilos of pasta at a time, as a team work. When I moved to Finland I was presented a traditional pasta machine, which works great but is tricky to use alone. Now I have Smeg‘s pasta roller and ravioli maker attachment to their stand mixers and they work as a charm. They simplify the work a great deal and making ravioli has never been this easy.
Just a few tips about the ravioli maker attachment and about ravioli in general:
— The filling has to be smooth, meaning that the filling shouldn’t contain any harder pieces of nuts or aged cheese
— Let the sheet of ready ravioli rest on a floured table for a while before separating the ravioli and help yourself with a pasta wheel cutter
–With fresh ravioli you have two options: eat them then and there or freeze them. In case you want to freeze them, place the separated ravioli onto a floured tray and put the tray in the freezer for one hour or until the raviolis won’t be frozen. Then place the ravioli into plastic bags and preserve them in the freezer. When you’ll want to cook you ravioli, put them into salted, boiling water while they’re still frozen and let them cook for 3 minutes or until they’ll be soft.
— Undoubtedly, there will be some leftover pasta, but do not throw it! Cut it irregularly and you’ll have some “maltagliati”, which you can boil and season with your favorite sauce.
Let’s now get to the recipe, shall we?
- 2 eggs
- 200 g durum or all purpose flour*
- 100 g boiled, blended and well drained
- spinach or nettle
- 100 g ricotta cheese
- Nutmeg to taste
- Salt to taste
- Pepper to taste
- 40 g butter
- 4 sage leaves
- Thyme twig
- Salt to taste
- Assemble the dough hook to the stand mixer.
- Break the eggs in a bowl and mix them with a fork.
- Add the flour and the eggs in the stand mixer bowl and mix for 5/10 minutes having the stand mix at speed 1 or 2. If the dough looks too dry, add a splash of water whereas, if it looks too runny, add a little flour. The ready dough shouldn’t be sticky, but very smooth and silky.
- Wrap the pasta dough in cling film and let it rest for half an hour.
- Assemble the pasta roller attachment to the stand mixer.
- Flour your table.
- Divide the pasta dough into four and roll
- the dough pieces one by one into the pasta roller, starting from the setting number 0 and working until you reach the desired thickness, which has to be a little bit thicker than when you make fettuccine (with the smeg pasta roller I would stop at the number 6)
- When one pasta sheet will be complete, spread it on the floured table and move on to the next one.
- Mix all the ingredients together.
- Adjust the flavor with nutmeg, salt and pepper.
- Using Smeg’s Ravioli attachment for the stand mixer, fill the pasta sheets
- with the nettle paste.
- Spread the ravioli sheet onto a well floured table or tray.
- Wait for a few minutes and separate the ravioli with the help of a pasta
- wheel cutter.
- Place all the ingredients in a pan and let the butter melt and cook for a few minutes, skimming the foam if necessary.
- Cook the ravioli in salted, boiling water for 3 minutes or until they’ll be soft.
- Add the ravioli to the sauce and stir delicately.
- Serve immediately with grated parmesan cheese.
pasta, it depends from your own taste. Some
like it silky and smooth and use a very fine
flour like all purpose flour (in Italy that would
be flour “00”). Some, me included, like it a
little rougher and use coarse flour, for
example durum (in Italy that would be flour
In collaboration with Smeg Nordic