Beef Italian Pasta

Homemade Tortellini

DSC_6494_2.jpgThe new issue of food network magazine arrived in my mail this weekend, and it had a recipe for homemade tortellini soup that I had originally planned on making. I ended up going with just the regular pasta in some delicious, homemade sauce because it’s one of my husband’s favourite meals. Kevin eats Buitoni is his go-to meal when I am not home for dinner so I thought it would be fun to try making it by hand.

They were fairly easy to make, but this was certainly a time consuming meal. It took me about 3 hours altogether, but it was worth it! I read up on pasta dough, and most recipes said to do 2 eggs per cup of flour so that’s how I came up with the recipe below.  

I went to this super cute store the other day that sells homemade spices. The store was all divided up by the type of spice (taco seasonings, herbs, etc.), and you could even buy little gift sets for people. Basically, it was a dream come true for me. I bought something called “Pasta Sprinkle” and used it in both the filling for the tortellini and the sauce recipes below. It was basically just an Italian spice blend (basil, oregano, thyme, garlic).
DSC_6480_2.jpgTortellini Filling
1 Tablespoon butter
1 lb lean ground beef (can substitute any ground meat or just do a cheese filling as well)
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese (I actually used a blend of Parmesan, Romano & Asiago that I found at Trader Joes)
2 Tablespoons Parsley
1 egg

Melt the butter in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the ground beef and cook for 3-4 minutes until browned.

Add the red pepper and the garlic and cook for another 2-3 minutes until the meat is cooked through.

Combine the cooked beef, cheese and Parsley in a food processor and blend until smooth.
DSC_6416_2.jpgMix in the egg until combined. Store the mixture in the fridge until ready to use.
DSC_6424_2.jpgTortellini
3 cups all-purpose flour
6 eggs
1 teaspoon salt

Combine the flour and salt and form a mound on a counter or large pastry board. Make a well in the center of the flour and crack the eggs into the well.
DSC_6440_2.jpgUse a fork to beat the eggs gently and then start incorporating the flour into the eggs until a dough forms. It will be really sticky, but you want to use enough flour that you can start to knead it without it just completely covering your hands.

Knead the dough for 10 to 15 minutes until it is an even yellow colour throughout and is smooth and elastic. Let the dough sit on a floured surface covered by a dry dish towel for at least 30 minutes.
DSC_6454_2.jpgCut the dough into more manageable pieces (I did 4 even sections). Roll out each section using either a pasta roller or a rolling pin. I tried to use my pasta roller, but it was giving me some trouble so I switched to the rolling pin. It took a lot of effort, but I was able to get it to be pretty thin. You want to be able to almost see through the dough so make is as thin as you can.

Cut the rolled out dough into squares that are about 1 1/2 inches. I used this neat little roller tool that I found at Bed Bath & Beyond.
DSC_6459_2.jpgPlace about 1/2 teaspoon of the filling in the center of each square.
DSC_6462_3.jpgFold the squares into a triangle over the filling and pinch the edges together to seal them (use an egg wash if the dough gets too dried out). Wrap the little wings of the triangle around your finger and pinch those together to get the classic, folded tortellini shape.
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DSC_6475_2.jpgBring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add the tortellini and boil for about 5 minutes until cooked through. Serve with pasta sauce and Parmesan cheese!
DSC_6493_2.jpgChunky Tomato Sauce
2 Tablespoons butter
1 medium yellow onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 large carrot, peeled and diced
2 stalks celery, diced (about 1 cup)
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
1/2 cup Vermouth or dry white wine
1 (14 oz) can diced tomatoes
1 (14 oz) can Italian stewed tomatoes
2 Tablespoons tomato paste
Salt & Pepper to taste
2 Tablespoons chopped Parsley

Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onion and garlic and saute for about 3 minutes.

Add the carrot, celery, red pepper flakes and Italian seasoning and continue to saute for 5-6 minutes.
DSC_6479_2.jpgAdd the wine and bring to a boil. Cook until the liquid is reduced by half. Add the tomatoes, tomato paste and salt and pepper. Reduce heat the heat to low and let the sauce simmer for 30 minutes. Add parsley and any additional seasonings as needed.
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Chunky Tomato Sauce
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
40 min
Total Time
50 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
40 min
Total Time
50 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 Tablespoons butter
  2. 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  3. 1 clove garlic, minced
  4. 1 large carrot, peeled and diced
  5. 2 stalks celery, diced (about 1 cup)
  6. 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  7. 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  8. 1/2 cup Vermouth or dry white wine
  9. 1 (14 oz) can diced tomatoes
  10. 1 (14 oz) can Italian stewed tomatoes
  11. 2 Tablespoons tomato paste
  12. Salt & Pepper to taste
  13. 2 Tablespoons chopped Parsley
Instructions
  1. Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onion and garlic and saute for about 3 minutes.
  2. Add the carrot, celery, red pepper flakes and Italian seasoning and continue to saute for 5-6 minutes.
  3. Add the wine and bring to a boil. Cook until the liquid is reduced by half. Add the tomatoes, tomato paste and salt and pepper. Reduce heat the heat to low and let the sauce simmer for 30 minutes. Add parsley and any additional seasonings as needed.
PheNOMenal http://phenomenalphoods.com/
Tortellini Filling
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
10 min
Total Time
15 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
10 min
Total Time
15 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 Tablespoon butter
  2. 1 lb lean ground beef (can substitute any ground meat or just do a cheese filling as well)
  3. 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  4. 1 clove garlic, minced
  5. 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese (I actually used a blend of Parmesan, Romano & Asiago that I found at Trader Joes)
  6. 2 Tablespoons Parsley
Instructions
  1. Melt the butter in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the ground beef and cook for 3-4 minutes until browned.
  2. Add the red pepper and the garlic and cook for another 2-3 minutes until the meat is cooked through.
  3. Combine the cooked beef, cheese and Parsley in a food processor and blend until smooth. Mix in the egg until combined. Store the mixture in the fridge until ready to use.
PheNOMenal http://phenomenalphoods.com/
Tortellini
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Prep Time
1 hr
Cook Time
5 min
Prep Time
1 hr
Cook Time
5 min
Ingredients
  1. 3 cups all-purpose flour
  2. 6 eggs
  3. 1 teaspoon salt
Instructions
  1. Combine the flour and salt and form a mound on a counter or large pastry board. Make a well in the center of the flour and crack the eggs into the well.
  2. Use a fork to beat the eggs gently and then start incorporating the flour into the eggs until a dough forms. It will be really sticky, but you want to use enough flour that you can start to knead it without it just completely covering your hands.
  3. Knead the dough for 10 to 15 minutes until it is an even yellow colour throughout and is smooth and elastic. Let the dough sit on a floured surface covered by a dry dish towel for at least 30 minutes.
  4. Cut the dough into more manageable pieces (I did 4 even sections). Roll out each section using either a pasta roller or a rolling pin. I tried to use my pasta roller, but it was giving me some trouble so I switched to the rolling pin. It took a lot of effort, but I was able to get it to be pretty thin. You want to be able to almost see through the dough so make is as thin as you can.
  5. Cut the rolled out dough into squares that are about 1 1/2 inches. Place about 1/2 teaspoon of the filling in the center of each square.
  6. Fold the squares into a triangle over the filling and pinch the edges together to seal them (use an egg wash if the dough gets too dried out). Wrap the little wings of the triangle around your finger and pinch those together to get the classic, folded tortellini shape.
  7. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add the tortellini and boil for about 5 minutes until cooked through. Serve with pasta sauce and Parmesan cheese!
PheNOMenal http://phenomenalphoods.com/

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