Although malfatto translates into “badly made,” these pillowy dumplings are tender with a rustic character. By omitting the flour, the ricotta and spinach mixture becomes a delicious filling for ravioli or tortellini using homemade pasta (see “Homemade Pasta 101”).
1 lb (450 g) light ricotta
1 cup (250 mL) frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
2 large free-range eggs
1/4 cup (60 mL) finely grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for garnish
2 Tbsp (30 mL) finely chopped mint
3 Tbsp (45 mL) whole wheat pastry flour, plus extra to coat malfatti
1/8 tsp (0.5 mL) freshly ground black pepper
2 to 3 grates fresh nutmeg
Semolina flour, to coat malfatti
1 Tbsp (15 mL) extra-virgin olive oil
2 cups (500 mL) halved cherry tomatoes
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup (250 mL) frozen peas
1/2 tsp (2 mL) finely grated lemon zest
Pinch red pepper flakes (optional)
Place ricotta in cheesecloth-lined sieve over bowl and let drain in refrigerator overnight. Ricotta should be pretty dry and crumbly.
Place ricotta in large bowl along with dry spinach, eggs, Parmesan, mint, flour, black pepper, and nutmeg. Mix until well combined.
Generously dust one rimmed baking sheet with whole wheat pastry flour and another with semolina. Place tablespoons of ricotta mixture onto tray floured with whole wheat and shake tray around to coat balls in flour. Roll gently between your hands until rounded and then place on semolina-lined tray. Set aside.
Bring large pot of water to boil.
In frying pan, warm oil over medium-high heat. Add tomatoes and garlic, and sauté until tomatoes start to break down, about 4 minutes. Add peas, lemon zest, and red pepper flakes, if using. Reduce heat to low and let sauce simmer slowly for 5 minutes.
When ready to serve, bring pot of water to simmer over medium heat. Working in batches so as not to overcrowd the pot, gently place malfatti into simmering water. When malfatti float back to the surface, remove carefully with slotted spoon and briefly place spoon on clean kitchen towel to drain off excess water. Divide among warm serving plates and repeat with remaining malfatti. Spoon sauce over top and serve with a garnish of Parmesan cheese.
Each serving contains: 236 calories; 16 g protein; 12 g total fat (5 g sat. fat, 0 g trans fat); 18 g total carbohydrates (3 g sugars, 3 g fibre); 227 mg sodium
Good to the last drop
When you are finished with your wedge of Parmesan cheese, don’t throw away the rind. Take a cue from professional chefs and freeze Parmesan rinds in an airtight container. Next time you make a soup or brodo (stock in Italian) add a piece of Parmesan rind when simmering and discard before serving. You will be amazed at the richness and complexity it adds.
source: "Italian Food the Italian Way", alive #366, April 2013
Adding farro, with its nutty bite, is a delicious and convenient way to increase your soup’s fibre and nutritional value. This hearty soup is the perfect remedy to a cold January day. Lemon and chervil add a bright contrast to the fibre-packed earthy flavours. Farro timesaver With a long cooking time, it’s worth it to cook a larger amount of farro and freeze it in small-portioned batches which can be thawed quickly. Using a ratio of 1:4 farro to water, cook on medium-high heat until farro is al dente, in a similar manner to the way you would cook pasta. Drain, rinse, portion, and freeze for later use. To thaw, simply run frozen farro under water or add directly to soup.
Oven-roasted delicata squash makes a crispy treat atop this green salad. As its name suggests, this squash has a thin, delicate skin that’s tasty when cooked. Pomegranate molasses, an ingredient common in Lebanese and Middle-Eastern cuisine, brings a sweet and sour flavour to the dressing. No pine nuts? Use squash seeds! Simply collect about 1/4 cup (60 mL) seeds from cleaned squash, rinse, and mix with 1/8 tsp (0.5 mL) of the spice mix used to roast the squash and 1/2 tsp (2 mL) olive oil. Roast at 425 F (220 C) on parchment-lined baking sheet for 20 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes.
Look for whole grain farro, which leaves the germ and bran intact, for this satisfying porridge that’s sure to kickstart your day. While the cooking time is longer than for pearled or semi-pearled varieties, you’ll get more nutrition. Take the time to enjoy the delicate scent of cardamom and ginger wafting through your kitchen as you prepare this. Ancient grain Farro (also referred to as emmer or einkorn) is a variety of wheat known as an ancient grain, which means that it hasn’t changed over time through breeding as is the case with many varieties of modern wheat.
Spanish-inspired flavours of almond and orange and a good punch of protein make this pudding a delicious and nutritious breakfast, snack, or dessert. The tiniest amount of large-flake sea salt and a drizzle of olive oil help bring all the flavours together. Amp up the orange For some additional orange flavour, when cooking chickpeas from dry, add a few strips of orange zest to the cooking water. Tastier toast Take your toast to the next level by using this pudding as a satisfying spread.