There are some meals that I will never forget. One of those meals is the open butternut squash ravioli from Apizz in New York City. The restaurant is tucked away on Eldridge Street, a quieter section of the Lower East Side. The small one room restaurant, with a roaring wood fire oven, is cozy and romantic. The food is modern Italian, and it’s clearly memorable since I still think about it six years after leaving New York.
Flying to New York for an order Apizz’s Ravioli con Zucca isn’t practical, so instead, I created my own version. The ravioli at Apizz is served “open” meaning that the two squares of pasta that contain the squash and cheese filling are not sealed. The sealed edges of ravioli add a weightiness to ravioli. Keeping the ravioli open, makes the meal lighter and more delicate.
Apizz uses butternut squash for their ravioli, but I opted to use Kabocha Squash, since I had plenty leftover after making bruschetta. You can either make your own pasta (which is what I did since I was feeling especially ambitious that day), or you could buy fresh lasagna sheets – which would save you a significant amount of time. If you really want to go all out, you can make the ricotta from scratch too.
Total time: 1 1/2 hours
You will need:
1 cup Roasted Kabocha Squash
1 cup Ricotta
8 fresh Lasagna Sheets
4 tablespoons Butter
2 tablespoons Brown Sugar
1 tablespoon Fresh Sage
Follow the directions to make Roasted Kabocha Squash. Once it is ready, just mash it. Keep your oven heated to 350 degrees.
Cut the lasagna sheets into 2 inch squares. Then cook them in boiling water for 2 minutes and drain.
Assemble the open ravioli by scooping 1 teaspoon mashed squash and 1 teaspoon ricotta onto one of the pasta squares. Then cover with a second pasta square and press lightly to distribute the filling. Continue assembling the pasta squares, placing each one in a casserole when done.
Melt butter in a skillet over medium low heat. Once the butter melts, add chopped sage. Stir frequently. Butter goes from browned to burnt quickly, so keep your eye on it.
Pour the brown butter sage sauce over the open ravioli. Then sprinkle with the brown sugar.
Bake for 10-15 minutes, until hot and lightly bubbling. Serve immediately.
And in case you are in New York, Apizz is on 217 Eldridge Street. The Ravioli con Zucca is still on the menu.