Rustic recipes from a Virginia gourmet farm school - The Buffalo News
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Rustic recipes from a Virginia gourmet farm school

A mix of juicy, late-season tomatoes, goat cheese, garlic and basil fills this free-form tart. A bit of lemon juice makes for a tender crust.

The dough recipe makes enough for 2 crostate. It’s good to have a disk on hand in the freezer, but this recipe can be cut in half.

Rustic Heirloom Tomato Crostata

Make ahead: The rolled-out dough needs to rest in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes and up to 2 days in advance; it can be frozen for up to 3 months. The crostata can be assembled and refrigerated several hours in advance; bring to a cool room temperature before baking. Adapted from Bonnie Moore, culinary director of Willowsford Farm in Virginia.

For the dough:

2½ cups flour, plus more for the work surface

16 tablespoons (2 sticks) chilled unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch cubes

½ teaspoon kosher salt

½ cup ice water

½ teaspoon fresh lemon juice

For the filling:

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 clove garlic, minced

6 leaves basil, stacked, rolled and cut crosswise into thin ribbons (chiffonade)

Kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper

1 pound heirloom tomatoes, cut into ¼-inch slices

About 12 cherry tomatoes, each cut in half

2 ounces soft goat cheese

For the dough: Combine the flour, butter and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer. Beat on low speed until the butter has reduced to the size of marbles. With the motor running, quickly add the water and lemon juice in a steady stream, beating for 30 seconds to form a shaggy dough with visible lumps of butter.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Lightly flour a work surface. Transfer the dough there; divide in half, forming each into a disk. Wrap one in plastic wrap to refrigerate or freeze.

Roll out the remaining disk of dough (on the floured work surface) to a round 1/8-inch thick, about 12 inches in diameter. Transfer to the baking sheet and refrigerate until cold, about 30 minutes.

When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Meanwhile, make the filling: Combine the oil, garlic and basil in a small bowl. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Brush the sliced tomatoes with a tablespoon of the mixture. Arrange them, slightly overlapping, on the rolled pie dough, leaving a 2-inch margin. Toss the cherry tomatoes with a tablespoon of the oil mixture, then scatter them on top of the sliced tomatoes. Drop pinches of the goat cheese over the tomatoes, then drizzle with the remaining oil mixture. Gently fold the outside edge of the dough over the tomatoes, pleating it as you work. The filling at the center will not be covered. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the crust is golden brown.

Let the crostata rest for at least 10 minutes before serving.

Serves 6.

Per serving: 340 calories, 6g protein, 24g carbohydrates, 25g fat, 12g saturated fat, 45mg cholesterol, 160mg sodium, 2g dietary fiber, 3g sugar.

Sweet Potato Ravioli with Sage Brown Butter

Chef Bonnie Moore’s rendition of this popular fall dish takes on a gentle sweetness when amaretto cookie crumbs are used in the filling instead of plain bread crumbs.

Any kind of winter squash can be used instead of sweet potato. This preparation calls for a pasta machine (hand-cranked, or a roller attachment on a KitchenAid mixer), a bench scraper and a 2-to-3-inch round cookie cutter. Although sheets of fresh pasta are easy to make, you can use store-bought sheets, preferably freshly made, from Italian markets.

Make ahead: The pasta dough needs to rest at room temperature for 15 minutes or in the refrigerator for up to 1 day. Bring to room temperature before rolling. The filling can be made a few days in advance and refrigerated. The filled raviolis can be refrigerated for up to a day.

For the filling:

1 small (8 ounces) sweet potato (may substitute ½ small winter squash)

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 tablespoons plain panko breadcrumbs (may substi- tute amaretto cookie crumbs)

1 large egg yolk

¾ cup freshly grated asiago cheese

½ cup mascarpone

2 tablespoons finely chopped flat-leaf parsley

Kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper

Freshly grated nutmeg

For the pasta:

About 2 cups flour, plus more for the work surface

3 large eggs

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

½ teaspoon kosher salt, plus more as needed

Cornmeal, for dusting

For the sauce:

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

12 ounces lamb sausage, casings removed

4 tablespoons (½ stick) unsalted butter

12 small sage leaves

2 tablespoons finely chopped pine nuts, toasted, for garnish (see note).

For the filling: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place the sweet potato on a baking sheet, then drizzle the sweet potato with the oil. Roast for 30 to 40 minutes, until tender. Cut in half lengthwise so the flesh will cool. The yield should be about 1 cup.

Scoop the flesh into a mixing bowl, then add the crumbs, egg yolk, asiago, mascarpone and parsley. Season with salt, pepper and nutmeg to taste, keeping in mind that the mixture needs to be a little on the salty side, so the flavor remains vibrant after the ravioli are cooked. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

For the pasta: Mound the flour on a work surface, making a large well at the center. Add 2 of the eggs, the oil and a good pinch or two of salt. Use a fork to blend those three ingredients, gradually working in the flour wall. Use your hand and the bench scraper to bring the dough together as it forms. It should not be sticky and should have a slight resistance. Wrap it in plastic wrap; let it rest at room temperature for 15 minutes, or refrigerate it for up to a day.

Dust a large rimmed baking sheet with cornmeal. Lightly dust a work surface with flour.

Set the roller on a pasta machine at the widest setting. Unwrap the dough. Working quickly to keep the dough from drying out, and with the motor on low, pass the dough through once, guiding it away from, rather than straight down toward, the counter. Fold one long end toward the center, then fold the other end on top of the first, so that you’ve created a threefold thickness.

Pass the dough through the roller attachment once, guiding it away rather than down. Narrow the setting by one notch. Fold the dough in the same fashion, then pass it through again; repeat the setting adjustment, folding and rolling one more time.

You should have a long sheet of dough that’s just translucent enough so you can see light/the shadow of your hand through it. The pasta sheet should be wide enough to accommodate 2 rows of ravioli.

Cut the dough evenly in half to form 2 sheets, laying one sheet on the floured work surface. Ideally, the second sheet of dough should be slightly wider than the first.

Whisk together the remaining egg and a pinch of salt, then brush the surface of the pasta sheet with it. Drop the sweet potato mixture onto the pasta in 1 ½-teaspoon amounts, spacing them about 1½ inches apart and creating 2 rows on the one sheet. Top with the remaining pasta sheet. Use your fingertips to press and seal around the pods of filling. Use the cookie cutter to form the raviolis, transferring them to the cornmeal-dusted baking sheet as you work. Refrigerate until ready to use. Discard any scraps.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Add a generous pinch of salt.

Meanwhile, make the sauce: Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the sausage in bite-size pinches; cook until it is browned and no trace of pink remains.

Add the butter; once it begins to foam, add the sage leaves. Cook until the butter begins to turn golden brown, watching closely to avoid burning it. Immediately remove the skillet from the heat.

Working in batches of 6 or so (to avoid crowding the pot), add the ravioli to the boiling water. Cook for 1½ to 2 minutes; they will float to the top. Use a slotted spoon to drain, then transfer the ravioli to the skillet. Gently toss to coat in the sauce.

Divide among individual plates; garnish with the chopped pine nuts. Serve warm.

Serves 6.

Note: Toast the pine nuts in a small, dry skillet over medium-low heat, shaking the pan to keep them from scorching, until lightly browned and fragrant. Cool before chopping.

Per serving: 640 calories, 20g protein, 38g carbohydrates, 44g fat, 18g saturated fat, 200mg cholesterol, 420mg sodium, 3 g dietary fiber, 2g sugar.

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