Ravioli Piedmontese

Ravioli Piedmontese (rah-veh-ohlay pec-ayd-mawn-tay zay) w one of the numerous and imaginative ways that the Italians have developed to make ravioli, one of their most popular hors d’oeuvre.

2 oz. butter

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1 large onion, finely chopped

1 garlic clove, crushed

12 oz. lean beef, finely minced

8 fl. oz. beef stock

½ teaspoon salt

2 teaspoon black pepper

8 oz. canned peeled tomatoes, coarsely chopped

1 teaspoon dried rosemary

2 teaspoon dried basil

2 oz. Parmesan cheese, finely grated

2 eggs, well beaten

8 oz. bought or home-made ravioli pasta, rolled out INTO 2 thin sheets

To make the filling, in a large frying-pan, melt the butter with the oil over moderate heat. When the foam subsides, add the onion and garlic and fry, stirring occasionally, for 8 to 10 minutes or until the onion is golden brown.

Add the beef and fry, stirring occasionally, for 8 minutes or until the meat is lightly browned.

Pour in the stock, and add the salt, pepper, tomatoes with the can juice, rosemary and basil to the beef. Cook the mixture, stirring frequently, for 10 minutes or until the meat is cooked and tender.Remove the pan from the heat and strain the contents through a fine wire strainer held over a small saucepan. Set the cooking liquid aside.

Put the contents of the strainer into a medium-sized mixing bowl. Add the Parmesan cheese and eggs and stir the mixture with a wooden spoon until it is thoroughly combined. The filling is now ready to use.

Fill, cook and drain the ravioli according to the instructions in the basic recipe. While the ravioli is cooking, heat the reserved cooking liquid over moderate heat, stirring occasionally.

Transfer the drained ravioli to a warmed serving dish, pour over the cooking liquid and serve immediately.

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