Today, I wanted to share with you my favorite of the trio, my Homemade Pasta with Lemon Ricotta and Squid Ink Sauces. Yes, you heard that right! Two sauces! I had a dish in Catania where ricotta was paired with squid ink, and this inspired the sauce pairing. I wanted to elevate a humble pasta dish with homemade pasta and the aesthetic experience of mixing ivory and ebony. There is a subtle warmth to the color of a ricotta cream, and a bit of lemon juice and zest brings out the luxurious creaminess of ricotta. I served the pasta mixed with this sauce. On the side, I served a gorgeously complex sauce of aromatics fried and blended in with squid ink, cooked with pieces of squid. This black, velvety sauce, once poured onto the pasta with Ricotta cream, creates an instant contrast both visually and on your palette. I am so proud of this dish I can’t even explain how wonderfully it worked out.
Today, I wanted to “class up my pasta” by adding some truffle zest to the dough. I was having friends over, after all. My original plan was a beautiful Stuffed Porkloin with Anchovies, Olives, Tomatoes, and Capers…which was going to be the long and short of it. but a friend was Pescatarian so I wanted to make sure we had something else to serve.
I was leafing through Alain Ducasse’s book and came across this combination of lobster and fresh truffle, perfect for our fish eaters. I had recently bought a little jar of fresh Summer Truffles since this cookbook required truffle for almost every recipe, and decided Thanksgiving was a great moment to serve it out. I loved a lot of Ducasse’s recipe and was inspired by his flavor profile, but have simplified this recipe to make it easier for the home cook.
During the summer (and all year really) my recipes revolve around the ingredients that I have surrounding me. This week I have plenty of eggplant and fresh corn on the cob. I decided I wanted to make a corn filled ravioli for a group of friends who were coming over for lunch. That lunch turned into a brunch, so I decided the most expedient way to solve my menu problem was to put an egg on it! Thus, I reinvented my Uova da Raviolo recipe from earlier this summer.
I really wanted to play up the corn, and didn’t want to waste the husks so I boiled them for about an hour and then used the water to both cook the pasta and flavor the sauce. It is traditional to use pasta water to thicken a sauce, so I figured the blending of the loose gluten from the pasta and the flavor of the corn would pair beautifully with a simple wine and sage butter sauce.
The farmer’s market is full of bounty, so I overbought again this week! I found myself with a bushel of asparagus, a pound of sugar snap peas, a couple ears of corn, and an overabundance of oyster squash! What to do? I thought of making a succotash, but honestly, I was not in the mood…