Tortellini are little ring-shaped pasta, sometimes also described as “navel shaped”, which led to their alternative name of “belly button.” I don’t know why anyone would nickname a delicious pasta after a weird body part, but that doesn’t take away from how good these are.
When making cheesy pasta I like to pair it with light vegetables that let the tortellini shine, so often the great taste of the pasta gets lost in heavy sauces.
And adding a little spinach makes it healthy, right?
They are cheesy and delicious!
For the pasta: 1 cup all purpose flour, 1 cup semolina flour, 2 eggs, 1 egg yolk, 2 teaspoons olive oil, 2 teaspoons salt.
For the tortellini filling: 2 egg yolks, 2 Tbsp bread crumbs, 2 tsp fresh thyme, 2 Tbsp parsley, 6 Tbsp ricotta cheese, 6 Tbsp grated parmesan, S&P to taste.
For the sauce: 2 tomatoes diced, 2 cloves garlic, 1/4 cup onion minced, 1/2 cup pasta vegetable stock (you could also use pasta water), a few handfuls of spinach
In a bowl add your pasta flour, make a small dome in the center and add the egg, with a fork gradually incorporate the egg into the flour- add oil and salt. Once everything comes together dump onto a floured surface and knead the dough for about 8 minutes, or until it springs back to the touch. Roll of the pasta into thin sheets using a pasta machine or a rolling pin. Cut into 2 inch rounds and cover with saran wrap until ready to use.
Combine all of the filling ingredients in a small bowl. To assemble the tortellini place 2 tsps of filling on each 2″ round of pasta. Seal edges with a little water, fold and seal into belly button shape.
Cook the pasta in salted boiling water for about 4 minutes (fresh pasta cooks faster than dried)
In a saute pan heat some olive oil. Add garlic and onion and suet until translucent, add the diced tomatoes and a touch of the stock and let it cook down. As the liquid cooks out, add a bit at a time. add the pasta to the pan along with a few handfuls of spinach. Once the spinach wilts remove and serve immediately. Top with a little shredded parmesan.