To fry or not to fry?

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The Italian word Friggere (pronounced frìg-ge-re) simply means “fry.” So many things are synonymous with being fried … eggs, potatoes, cheese, zucchini, ravioli … wait, what … ravioli???

Yes, ravioli.

If you have never had the opportunity to have this Mediterranean staple prepared in this fashion, now is the time.

Traditional ravioli, which means “to wrap,” was not served with a tomato sauce but in a broth. The addition of tomatoes to the ravioli topping didn’t happen until the 16th century when tomatoes were brought from the New World and introduced to Italy. Typically, ravioli are boiled and served with a sauce.

Toasted ravioli, which has an egg wash, dipped in bread crumbs and deep fried, is an American adaptation and originated in St. Louis, Mo.

Our version is simple and so very tasty. Whether your ravioli is homemade, frozen or fresh from the grocery store … let’s Friggere!

Fresh Friggere Ravioli

3 cups Semolina flour

2 tablespoons EVOO – extra virgin olive oil

1 cup warm water

2 cups ravioli filling of your choice

1 cup of your favorite marinara sauce

Shredded parmesan

¼ cup unsalted butter

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Put flour on surface, make a center well, add olive oil and a small amount of the water. Mix, bringing flour from around the edges, kneading together. Add more water, if needed; continue kneading; dough will form a smooth ball.

Cover dough with a bowl and let rest for 10 minutes. Re-knead until dough is smooth. Cover again with bowl for 15 minutes, then divide dough ball into 3 pieces.

At this point you can either roll out your dough to the proper thickness or feed it through an attachment such as a KitchenAid sheeter. Dough should be no thicker than a nickel.

Assembling the ravioli; brush the egg wash over a sheet of pasta.

Drop 1 teaspoon of your filling mixture about 1 inch apart on the sheet of pasta.

Place a second sheet of pasta dough on top. Press firmly around the filling to seal.

Cut into individual ravioli with a knife or ravioli pin. Seal the edges.

In a skillet, add the butter and olive oil and melt over medium heat.

Add ravioli rounded side down and Friggere for 2 to 3 minutes until they begin to brown on the bottom. Turn ravioli over and Friggere the other side for 1 to 2 minutes. Keep a close eye on the ravioli as they will turn brown quickly.

When both sides are browned, remove from pan and set on paper towel to drain.

Arrange on a serving platter, top with marinara sauce and parmesan — serve immediately … mangia!

“Life is a piece of cake, enjoy every layer!” — Cynthia Ferris-Bennett

Cynthia Ferris-Bennett, a Nevada native, is the owner of the Sierra Chef Culinary Center, Italian Bakery & Gourmet Market in Genoa which specializes in weekly cooking classes, gourmet culinary pantry and market, Italian desserts and pastries. She manages the Sierra Chef Farmers Market at Lampe Park on Wednesdays and the Sierra Chef Farmers Market in Genoa at the Orchard House on Saturdays May through September. Ferris-Bennett is also the event manager for Orchard House in Historic Genoa for weddings and events.


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