Most weekends my grandmother cooked for her family. Lunch consisted of meat, potatoes, in big long iron trays cooked in an outdoor clay oven that had been heated with dry olive and carob branches. She also made a lot of pasta arranged in two large platters, one with pasta cooked al dente and another with over cooked pasta which is how my uncle, god rest his soul, preferred it. The pasta never had sauce just gratings of a dry goats cheese with lots of mint. It’s one of my strongest food memories of her. Key to this was cooking the pasta in a strong chicken stock which she made from one of her own chickens. Just before the pasta was ready she turned the heat off covered it for a couple of minutes to absorb the flavours and then served it with a little of the stock. Inspired by this I created an East Med ravioli with kid stock, which is both light and deeply flavourful.
I had previously roasted kid goat ribs in about 600ml of water for about 3 hours at 150C and when cool I picked the meat off the bones. I saved the stock and put it in the fridge as it’s easier to clean out the fat and any impurities when it turns into a jelly. The pasta isn’t like Italian style pasta it’s lighter and resembles a wonton. This recipe is enough for 4 as a starter.
200g of roughly chopped cooked kid goat meat
200g of tomatoes, deseeded and finely chopped
30g of capers
10g of fresh mint
salt to taste
For the pasta:
150g of flour ’00’
4 tablespoons of lukewarm water
2 tablespoons of olive oil
a pinch of salt
- Make the pasta by placing flour, salt, oil and water in a processor for a couple of minutes. The mixture should have formed a soft ball.
- Kneed on a floured surface for 5 minutes and then wrap in cling film and place in the fridge to cool and rest for 30 minutes.
- Prepare the broth by scrapping off the fat formed at the top of the chilled stocked. Spoon the remaining jellied stock into a big pan avoiding the bottom part of the jelly with sediment.
- Gently heat, add water if too strong. Add a pinch of salt. Set aside.
- Prepare the pasta by cutting the ball into 4 pieces. Roll out each piece with a rolling pin on a floured surface, keep the other pieces moist by covering them with a clean tea towel.
- Pass through a pasta machine starting at the widest setting and then reduce the gap until you achieve as thin a sheet of pasta as possible.
- Cut the pasta with an 8cm round cutter or cut into approximately 8cm squares.
- Place a heaped teaspoon of meat on one half of shaped pasta.
- Use a pastry brush dipped in water and circle around the filling, this will ensure a tight seal is formed.
- Fold the pasta over to cover the meat. The key is to try and exclude as much of the air as possible by using your thumb and index finger to tightly pack the filling.
- Place the tomatoes, capers and mint in individual serving bowls with a pinch of salt.
- When ready to serve bring the broth to boil, there should be enough to cover the ravioli, top up with water if necessary.
- Place the ravioli in the broth for two minutes then place in the serving bowls and spoon some of the broth on top.
- Sprinkle some haloumi in each bowl and serve immediately.