Have you ever made your own pasta so far? If yes, then you might already know that, although the whole process is quite time-consuming, it`s so worth it. Fresh homemade pasta is way better than store-bought. You did not yet find the courage to try it out yourself? Don`t feel ashamed, I haven`t either up until now. What finally made me do it? Mainly two reasons, which I am about to tell you right now.
Did you know that yesterday was the national day of the tortellini? Of course we absolutely had to cook some of them this week. So I went to the supermarket with the aim to get a package. But who might have guessed it! Our supermarket didn`t have any vegan tortellini at all. Even the pasta dough wasn`t vegan. Here you got the first and main reason, why I decided to make my own tortellini.
Second I instantly fell in love with Bianca Zapatka`s heart shaped ravioli. After that there was no way I would miss on doing another Valentine`s Day inspired meal, but this time a savory one. And of course our supermarket didn`t sell any heart-shaped vegan tortellini either. And thus for reason nummero dos!
In case you are still on the search for a yummy Valentine`s Day dinner idea, these heart-shaped tortellini stuffed with spicy pesto rosso could do the trick for you. I didn`t convince you yet? Then let me tell you; this was one of the best pesto rosso I have ever eaten in my entire life! A little Italian sun began to shine deep in my heart. And in yours definitely too if you give this a try. Only disadvantage, you must have some spare time on your hand to creat this delicious Italian treat. But I`m 100% sure your sweetheart will love this and appreciate all your effort!
You’re in on this? Wonderful, then let`s dive into the process of making these beauties.
Ingredients (for 2 servings of tortellini* & 1 jar of pesto):
- 300-340g multi grain flour, organic
- 1 teaspoon piri-piri infused salt or regular salt
- 80ml water
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- some flour to roll out the dough
- round cookie-cutter
- 10-15g fresh basil leaves
- 150g sun dried tomatoes, pickled in oil
- juice of 1/2 lemon, organic
- 2 red chili
- 2 tablespoons tomato puree
- 2 teaspoons chili infused oil
- 2 pressed garlic cloves, organic
- 90g of the oil the tomatoes were pickled in
- 30g pine seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon piri-piri infused salt or regular salt
- a pinch of freshly ground black pepper
- 1 piping bag or freezer bag
- 100g cherry tomatoes, organic (optional)
- a few fresh basil leaves (optional)
- Mix together flour, 1 teaspoon salt, water and olive oil in a bowl until you got a firm dough. Knead the dough until elastic, whereas the dough shouldn`t be too wet/soft. I first started with 300g flour and then had to add some more. Cover and let sit for 30 minutes.
- Prepare your pesto in the meantime. Therefor add all the ingredients all the way down to the black pepper into a jar. Puree using a hand-held blender. Alternatively you can also use a food processor or regular blender.
- Sprinkle some flour on a flat surface and roll out the dough as thin as possible. Use a pasta machine if you wish. I tried it with my machine but it didn`t work out for me, as the dough was full of holes afterwards. But who knows, maybe it`s working for you.
- Cut out dough circles using the cookie-cutter and place them on a baking sheet.
- Fill the pesto into the piping bag or freezer bag. If you are using the freezer bag you will need to cut off one edge and that`s about all the difference to the piping bag. Pipe a small amount of the pesto onto the middle of your pasta circles. Don`t bother if there is some oil of the pesto dripping out, you will squeeze that away in a later step anyway.
- Damp one half of the edge of your circles with a little bit of water and turn down the other half onto that half. Or in other words shape half moons, same to making dumplings. Press on the ends of your circles very tight and also make sure that you pressed away all the remaining air between the filling and the rest of the dough. This is important as you don`t want your tortellini to open whilst cooking.
- In a next step turn the round side up. Wrap the left and right side of your tortellini around your finger and stick them together using water. Now you can gently pull those ends forming the peak of your heart. Then you press down the upper round part of your tortellini in the middle to form the rest of the heart. Here is a very good video showing you how to form tortellini
- Fill a pan with water, add a teaspoon of salt and bring to boil. Add your tortellini and cook until they start swimming on top.
- Drain off the water using a sieve and serve them immediately with the remaining pesto. If you like you can add some cherry tomatoes and fresh basil leaves as well. There`s also the possibility to gently roast the cherry tomatoes before serving them with the pasta.
This dish is absolutely worth the effort. The result is super fresh and soft. It literally only took us 10 minutes to finish our plates. In case you are already pros in making your own pasta please share your tips and ideas.
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*The recipe for the pasta dough is from the following cookbook.