A lot of work, but a great finished product. Actually fun to make if you allow yourself plenty of time. Or do what Marguerite suggests – invite your friends to a ravioli-making party. Have them bring their own rolling pins, and make enough for everyone to take some home.



2-1/2 pounds (about 10 cups) unbleached, unsifted flour (Marguerite prefers King Arthur)
1 tablespoon salt
3 medium eggs
Boiling water as needed


Make a well in the flour on a pastry board. Add salt. Partially beat eggs before adding to flour. Add eggs gradually; mix with fingers until dough resembles the texture of cornmeal. Sprinkle the boiling water on mixture starting with only ¼ cup, and work well into dough. Add more boiling water as needed until dough is smooth and pliable, but not too soft. Knead dough for about 5 minutes. Pat with some water, cover, and let sit for about half an hour. Prepare filling and meat sauce while waiting for the dough.



2 pounds ricotta cheese
5 medium eggs
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
1 small garlic clove, pressed
8 parsley sprigs, finely chopped


Blend all ingredients together. Let sit overnight, if possible, to allow flavors to mix.

Meat Sauce:


1 garlic clove, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
Dash of sweet basil, red pepper flakes, and oregano
1/2 pound lean ground beef
1/2 pound ground pork (beef may be substituted)
1 can (6 ounces) tomato paste
1 can (28 ounces) ground, peeled tomatoes (Pastene kitchen-ready)
Bay leaf
1 can water (using 28-ounce tomato can)


Put enough oil in pan to coat bottom. Saute garlic, onion, and seasonings over medium heat until onion is lightly golden. Add all the meat. Cook until slightly browned. Blend tomato paste in well; stir a few minutes. Add tomatoes and bay leaf and stir. Pour in water. Reduce heat and allow sauce to simmer for up to 1 hour, stirring frequently. (Remove bay leaf before serving.) To Assemble: Divide dough into fourths and roll out only one fourth at a time, keeping the rest covered. Roll dough as thin as possible. Place heaping teaspoon of filling 1-½ inches from edge of dough and continue to place filling in straight row across the dough, being careful to leave 1-½ inches between each spoonful. Fold over the edge of the dough to completely cover the first row of filling. With your fingers, gently press down on dough around the mounds of filling. Using a 2-½-inch ravioli cutter, cut around the mounds. A pastry cutter or small glass may be used instead – but be sure to seal the edges with a fork. Continue in this manner until all the dough is used. (The dough that you don’t want to use may be frozen in a plastic bag and used at a later date to make more ravioli or even pasta. It may also be kept in the refrigerator up to 5 days.)

To Freeze: This recipe may very well make much more than you will want to serve at one time. The ravioli can be frozen before it is cooked. Sprinkle flour or cornmeal on cookie sheets and place ravioli in a single layer on the sheets and freeze. After the ravioli is frozen, which takes about 20 minutes, it may be placed in plastic bags. This way the pieces won’t stick to one another.

To Cook: Bring 6 to 8 quarts of salted water to a boil. Gradually add the ravioli and cook until render, about 15 to 20 minutes. It is best not to overcrowd the pot, because you will need to continually press the ravioli to the bottom of the pot so that they will cook evenly.

To Serve: Carefully remove ravioli and let them drain well. Place them in a serving dish and cover with meat sauce and a layer of grated Parmesan or Romano cheese. Continue in this manner until you have used all the cooked ravioli. Serve with a tossed salad, garlic bread, and wine. Enjoy your meal and all the compliments you will receive!

Cooking & Recipes


Enough sauce to serve 6, ravioli to serve 9.

Preparation Method

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