Although it may be a bit tedious and exhausting, making homemade pasta is becoming my new favorite hobby. When my friend, Ashley, had said she hadn’t had ravioli in years because she can’t ever find them gluten free, I knew I just had to fix that for her. Since Pasta Fest went so well, I felt ready to tackle gluten free pasta dough.
I found a recipe on King Arthur’s website that had good reviews. What I liked most about this recipe was its simplicity, much like regular pasta dough. Pasta should not contain a laundry list of ingredients. Plus, with the variety of all purpose gluten free flour blends, you can typically just use standard recipes, replacing the flours.
Cup4Cup is a great brand if you are looking for one of those easy conversions. Their multipurpose flour can directly replaced for any recipes calling for all purpose flour.
If you are not used to using gluten free flour, the first thing you are going to notice is how much more expensive it is than standard flour. I wanted quality ingredients to go into this dish, so I figured it would be worth paying for a good product that I knew would be safe for my friend.
The pasta dough came together very well. After kneading and resting the dough, it was visually and texturally very similar to the regular pasta dough. If I handed it to someone and didn’t say it was gluten free, I don’t think they would have known.
While using the pasta roller, I started to tell that the gluten was missing. It was a tougher dough so it did not want to roll as easily through the pasta roller. The dough was not getting that super smooth texture on its surface. Additionally, since this flour is more fine than regular flour, in order to avoid the dough breaking in the machine, I stopped the rolling on an earlier setting that I would have preferred for ravioli. This resulted in a thicker dough and ravioli than with the standard flour.
For the filling, I used the filling of these mushroom ravioli from Half Baked Harvest. You simply can’t go wrong with mushrooms, ricotta, fontina, and parmesan cheeses stuffed into pasta. Instead of using the rosemary butter sauce that accompanied this recipe, I used the brown butter sage sauce recipe from Food & Wine that I used for Pasta Fest.
I served these ravioli with a side of Brussels sprouts. I started by frying some chopped pancetta in my cast iron skillet. I then added a large bag of Brussels sprouts (trimmed and halved lengthwise) into the pan to allow them to sauté for just a few minutes. I drizzled them with olive oil and seasoned them with dried Italian herbs (basil, oregano, thyme), season salt, and pepper. I had been preheating my oven at 400 degrees and popped them into the oven to roast. A few minutes before ready to serve, I turned on the broiler to allow them to crisp. Finally, I finished off the Brussels sprouts with freshly grated parmesan cheese.
The whole meal was delightful. The Brussels sprouts got a lot of flavor from the salty pancetta. The ravioli filling was creamy and earthy, and the brown butter sage sauce complemented it well. The pasta itself was really good. I was surprised how well it turned out when I am not accustomed to using gluten free flour. I could tell just slight differences between this pasta and glutinous pasta, but it tasted really good in its own right. If you follow a gluten free diet, you would probably be very satisfied with this pasta.