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Asparagus-and-Ricotta Ravioli

Chef Mario Batali
Restaurant/Operation Babbo, New York City
Menupart Pasta, Rice and Grains 
Daypart Lunch, Dinner
Region Italian

Yield: 8 servings
Kosher salt, divided use 4 Tbsp.
Asparagus spears, medium, tough ends trimmed 20
Fresh ricotta cheese, drained 1 1/2 cups
Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, freshly grated, divided use 1 cup plus
Extra-virgin olive oil 2 Tbsp. 2 Tbsp.
Black pepper, freshly ground as needed
Basic pasta dough (recipe follows) 1 lb.
Unsalted butter 1 cup
1. Bring 3 qt. of water to boil and add 1 Tbsp. salt. Add asparagus; cook until very tender, about 3 minutes, then shock in ice bath. Once asparagus is cool, drain, pat dry and slice very thin on the diagonal, reserving 1/4 cup for garnish.
2. In medium bowl, combine asparagus, ricotta, 1 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, oil and salt and pepper to taste; stir well to combine.
3. Roll out pasta dough to the thinnest setting on a pasta machine. Cut pasta sheets into 4-in. rectangles. Place a scant Tbsp. of ricotta filling on 1 half of each rectangle; fold over to enclose filling and press edges to seal. (At this point ravioli can be frozen between sheets of parchment until ready to cook.)
4. Bring 6 qt. water to boil and add 2 Tbsp. salt.
5. In a 14- to 16-in. sauté pan, melt butter over high heat until foam subsides. Add reserved asparagus and remove from heat. Cook ravioli in boiling water until tender, about 3 minutes. Drain, reserving small amount of water; add ravioli to pan with butter. Add 3 Tbsp. pasta water; toss gently over high heat for 1 minute. Season with salt and pepper. Divide evenly among 8 warmed pasta bowls; grate Parmigiano-Reggiano over top. Serve immediately.
Basic Pasta Dough
Yield: 1 lb.
All-purpose flour 3 1/2 to 4 cups
Extra-large eggs 4
Extra-virgin olive oil 1/2 tsp.
1. Mound 31/2 cups flour in center of large wooden board. Make well in middle of flour; add eggs and oil. Using a fork, beat together eggs and oil; begin to incorporate flour, starting at inner rim of well.
2. As well expands, keep pushing flour up from base of mound to retain well shape. Dough will come together when half of flour has been incorporated.
3. Start kneading dough with heels of hands. Once the mass is cohesive, remove from board and scrape up and discard any leftover bits. Lightly reflour board and continue kneading for 6 more minutes. Dough should be elastic and a little sticky. Wrap in plastic and allow to rest for 30 minutes at room temperature before rolling or shaping as desired.

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