Homemade Pumpkin Ravioli, Caramelized Onions and Brown Butter Sauce

finishedI started making pasta years ago to satiate my carb cravings. No boxed pasta could ever mimic the taste and texture of a homemade dough so I set out to make my own. After rolling out a dozen or so pasta doughs by hand, I was given a beautiful pasta maker as a birthday gift from a dear friend. My pasta was instantly transformed. No more thick, gummy strands—I could roll the pasta dough out so thin that it would melt in your mouth.

egg&dough

After many batches of linguine and spaghetti, I tried ravioli. Making your own ravioli is so satisfying—you can make them with anything you have lying around the house and the result is usually heavenly. I tried them with cheese, vegetables, meats and even fruit.

rollin

When I set out to do my pantry inventory as described in a previous post, I found a can of pumpkin puree left over from Thanksgiving. I mixed the pumpkin with leftover ricotta from pizza making and whipped up this delicious ravioli. I finished it with balsamic glazed caramelized onions and a thyme brown butter sauce. Decadent and delicious!

brown butter

I used the ‘Poor Man’s Two Egg Pasta Dough’ from Lidia’s Family Table. It’s one the easiest and most delicious dough recipes I’ve come across.

Pumpkin Ravioli with Caramelized Onions and Brown Butter Sauce

Ravioli

1 lb. Lidia’s ‘Poor Man’s’ pasta dough, rolled for ravioli

1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1/2 cup ricotta cheese
1 tsp. fresh thyme
Caramelized onions
1 tbsp. butter
1 tsp. olive oil
1 large onion, sliced
splash of balsamic vinegar
Brown butter sauce
1 stick (8 tbsp.) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 tsp. fresh thyme
toasted pine nuts (optional)
grated Parm (optional)
salt and pepper to taste
Ravioli instructions
Mix together pumpkin, ricotta and fresh thyme. Season with salt and pepper. Dollop one heaping tablespoon of filling as per Lidia’s instructions. I used a 2″ biscuit cutter for my ravioli because I don’t have a pastry cutting wheel. In the past, I’ve just cut them in squares with a sharp knife. The shape doesn’t matter so much, just make sure you’re consistent and you’re leaving enough dough around the filling to egg wash and seal. I dusted with flour and stuck them in the fridge on a baking sheet until I was ready to eat. You can freeze them as well and just pop them in a pot of water for an easy weeknight meal.
Caramelized onions instructions
In a medium frying pan, combine the butter and olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and stir frequently until browned and soft, about 20 minutes. Add a quick splash of balsamic vinegar and stir until almost all liquid has evaporated. Remove from heat.
When you’re read to eat, put on a big pot of boiling, salted water. Drop the little pasta pillows in and let cook for about 3 minutes or until they start to float to the top of the water. The time depends on how soft you like your pasta and how big you made your ravioli. I would start with 3 minutes and take one out to test if you’re not sure.
Brown butter sauce instructions
While your ravioli cooks, start your brown butter sauce. In a lightly colored, small pan over medium heat, melt your butter. The butter will start to foam up but will quickly subside. This is where it gets tricky—the butter will go from a yellow to a light brown to a toasty, caramel color. Swirl the pan around once or twice to make sure the butter is being heated evenly. Once the butter hits that toasty darker brown, immediately remove it from the heat and transfer to a bowl leaving as much of the dark solids in the bottom of the pan as possible.  The solids won’t hurt but they can give an odd flavor to your butter.  The butter can go from perfect to burnt in seconds so it’s important to keep a careful eye on it. Once the butter is transfered to a bowl, I stirred in my fresh thyme. If you’re not sure what color it should be, check out these great photos on Bon Appetit’s website.
Top your cooked ravioli with caramelized onions and brown butter. I sprinkled mine with toasted pine nuts and grated Parm. Enjoy!
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