Friday, June 5, 2009

Rotolone spinaci e ricotta

Rotolone spinaci e ricotta is an Italian classic which I probably haven't eaten for over 15 years. After seeing the picture on a magazine, it brought back memories of the last time I made this when I was still a student back in Italy. The nostalgic moment gave me the inspiration, and I got started right away...

The recipe is quite simple. All you need is the following:
- 250g ricotta
- 2 eggs
- 1 bag of fresh Spinach (I bought the pre-packed one from Cold Storage)
- some breadcrumbs (Japanese panko is always best!)
- grated Parmesan or pecorino cheese

For the tomato sauce, please see my sunday gnocchi recipe, as you can use the same sauce.
The ingredients to make the pasta dough are not included in the list above. You can use the standard recipe (100g flour for 1 egg, a pinch of salt and olive oil).

Quickly boil the spinach, remove excess water and put into a blender. Once the spinach turned into a paste, put into a bowl together with the ricotta, some Parmesan cheese, salt, nutmeg to taste, pepper. Add some beaten egg and mix until the paste is smooth, then add a handful of breadcrumbs to make the mixture firmer.
Make a couple of sheets of dough, then lay them flat and join them onto a large cloth. cover evenly with the mixture and then roll slowly and cautiously. Finally, wrap the cloth all around the roll, tie it tightly at both ends and put into boiling water for about 15-20 minutes.
In the meantime, make sure the tomato sauce is ready.

Remove the roll from the water, unwrap and cut diagonally into regular slices. Arrange the slices onto a baking tray, cover with Parmesan and a bit of pepper (see picture above), and put into an oven on grill. Let it grill until the top is nicely brown and crispy, then remove from the oven, arrange on a plate with the tomato sauce and some basil for decoration.


Anonymous said...

this is something new to me, prep seems labour intensive but the results is obviously worth all the troubles..
if I were to avoid making the pastry, any ready made pastry type suggested?would lasagne sheet works?

amiscell said...

I don't think it will work well, I would say. In that case, I would recommend you buy "cannelloni" (the round hollow tubes) and fill them with exactly the same mixture. You then "gratin" them with some bechamel sauce and parmesan on top. That's another classic recipe, although slightly different.

However, not to discourage you, making the pastry is the easiest part and takes no longer than 5 minutes. Mix 1 egg with 100 gr of flour, salt and olive oil, kneed for 3-4 mins and set aside while you prepare the rest (30 mins or longer). If you haven't got a pasta machine to make it into sheet, just use a roller or similar. Just 2 sheets won't cost you that much to make, even by hand!

Anonymous said...

ah i c.thanks for the advice,ya,I think I will make the pastry by hand then ..shouldn't let the lazy bug in me took over..cheers!

amiscell said...

Brilliant! I guarantee it will be fun!

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