(Originally published January 24, 2013 on Examiner.com).
“Fresh pasta, to me, is as handcrafted as food can get. It is my true passion in cooking, because of its simplistic nature and it’s tenacious character. The possibilities of combinations of flavors, fillings, etc. is endless.”
Veggie Ravioli Modo Mio……(vegetarian menu option)
Inspiration – this concept of the modo mio “my way” ravioli comes from my time spent as sous chef at Spiaggia in Chicago, where we made a similar dish with chanterelles and rock shrimp. I wanted to produce a vegetarian option that wasn’t an “after thought”
Sourcing – the beets (to make the pasta dough) and brussel sprouts are from Jaime Farms, pea tendrils from Coleman Family Farms, goat feta cheese from Drake Farms, baby carrots from Weiser Farms
Prep, Cooking and Plating – the pasta dough is a semolina and egg pasta with beet puree; the stripes are made with red bull’s blood beets and golden beets. The vegetables in the center are farmer’s market vegetables – cauliflower, carrots, fennel, pea tendrils (will change based on availability at the market) cooked with green garlic and fresh herbs, topped with goat feta cheese and crispy brussel sprout leaves
Menu – this style of cooking is prevalent on my menu, lots of vegetables from the farmer’s market with various preparations, always looking to extract as much natural flavor as possible. I like to feature vegetarian options that are not “an after thought”, and that are so flavorful that meat eaters enjoy them.