Homemade Ravioli

Homemade pasta is an easy task and is the sign of a real chef. You can buy frozen, but it is easy and quick to make your own. I’ve been meaning to make my own pasta for years. I’ve seen so many cooking shows where they make the “nest” of flour, make a hole in the center, add some eggs, and slowly mix to become a beautiful pasta dough. Though I have every intention of living my dream and making it that way, I also have a stand mixer and I wanted to make this dough quickly, so next time I make a homemade pasta (or so I say). This recipe made enough pasta for about a pound of pasta. As ravioli, it made 22, but it could easily make 24-25 if you had a pasta roller and could thin it out more evenly. I made a simple cheese mix with what I had. If you wanted more flavor variety, you could add spinach, some herbs, or other veggies/purées. The egg was essential to keep the ravioli closed, however you should press all the edges together as well. These ravioli were very delicious, and the flavor was so unique because they were homemade. This dish will easily impress any guest.

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, add 2 cups flour, 2 eggs, 2 Tbsp oil, and a pinch of salt. Use a dough hook, and beat over low speed till it comes together.
  2. Once the dough has come together and fully formed, knead dough on floured counter for a minute, then wrap in saran and let sit for 15 minutes.
  3. While dough is resting, mix together 1/4 cup cottage cheese and 1/4 cup mozzarella for your filling. In another container, add one egg and beat till fully mixed.
  4. Flour a large work surface. Begin rolling out pasta dough, rotating the dough by a quarter turn every couple passes. Roll out the dough as thin as you can by hand, less than 1/8th inch if possible. Cut the dough into 1 1/2 inch by 1 1/2 inch squares using a sharp knife.
  5. Begin placing about 1 Tbsp of cheese filling onto every other square. Brush egg wash on the outer edges of the squares without filling.
  6. Place the egg wash square on top of a cheese square and pinch the edges closed. Dust lightly with flour and place on baking sheet. Repeat this step until all ravioli are formed.
  7. At this point, you can begin boil them immediately, 3-5 minutes until they float. You can refrigerate them well sealled for up to 2-3 days, or place them into a freezer bag and keep them frozen for 1-2 months.

Homemade Flour Tortillas

These Flour tortilla were so easy and came out so delicious, it makes me wonder why anyone buys tortillas! This recipe was so fast, and I found this recipe everywhere, it was so popular! Here is the link to these tortillas, but they all seem to be re-posts from the original.

This is a simple alternative to bread if you are already out, and these tortilla aren’t overly sweet or salty. They are very neutral. We’ve done tuna salad and tacos on them so far, and not only are they strong, but they are still soft taste great with both foods! I highly recommend trying this recipe. You may never buy tortillas again!

  1. In a bowl combine 3 cups flour, 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp baking powder, 1/3 cup oil, and 1 cup warm water. Combine until a smooth dough forms.
  2. Transfer to a floured work space and divide into 16 balls. Coat each in flour then flatten with your hand. Cover with a clean towel and let relax for 15 minutes.
  3. Roll out each round into a 6-7 inch circle, do not stack them! Cover the ones you are not actively working with.
  4. Heat a large skillet to medium heat. Place your circle of dough into the hot skillet. Cook on the first side for about a minute, you should see bubbling in the dough. Flip and cook an additional 20 seconds.
  5. Place finished tortillas in a sealed container, or place between two large serving plates if you plan to eat relatively soon.

Cinnamon Rolls with Starter

These cinnamon rolls were delicious! They were not too sweet, and could easily be eaten with breakfast for that reason. If you were going to eat them as a dessert, I would recommend making an icing, just because they lack a bit of the sweetness on their own that you’d want in a dessert.

I did have some problems with this recipe. First, I store my starter in the fridge, and to add cold milk to that, it took a very long time for my dough to rise. I made this dough around lunch time, and by dinner time, the dough wasn’t even at room temp yet. The next morning, however, it was fully proofed. Once I mixed in the additional ingredients, I placed it on a floured surface, and it just stuck to everything. It was a very soft and sticky dough that loved my counter top. I mixed in more flour to no avail, and so i deiced to roll it out on a generous bed of flour. I mixed the filling and coated the dough,and tried to roll, but it was just so sticky I had to move very slowly, constantly scraping the dough off the counter. I didn’t want to overwork the dough when I was mixing, but I should have added even more flour. I would also proof the rolls before baking, because they didn’t rise during the baking step, they only expanded in width. I’ve made some alterations to the recipe and added it below.

Original recipe can be found here!

  1. Heat 1/2 cup of butter until partially melted. Add to 3 1/2 cups flour in your mixing bowl. Mix in 1 Tbsp sugar and 1/2 cup milk, then add starter until dough comes together. Cover and let proof in a warm spot for 2-3 hours
  2. Sprinkle 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp baking powder and 1/2 tsp baking soda over the dough and gently knead into dough, add more flour as needed, but don’t overwork.
  3. Roll out the dough into a rectangle until it is about 1/2 inch thick.
  4. In a side bowl, melt 5 Tbsp butter. Add 1/2 brown sugar and 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon and stir. Spread evenly over dough.
  5. Starting along the long edge, roll up the dough. Cut the roll into 1 inch thick slices.
  6. Heat oven to 400 F
  7. Place slices into a well greased baking dish and bake for 30 minutes or until golden.

Pretzels Using Sour Dough Starter

Salty snacks are my favorite kind of snacks. I love chips, pretzels, and nuts. My family also loves soft pretzels. It reminds me of baseball games as a child, getting a big hot pretzel and either a cup of cheese or making a cup of mustard. I know many people like the pretzel and cheese combo, but I love the tangy flavor that mustard with pretzels offers. I also am looking for creative uses for starter, and since I like pretzels, I thought this would be a great way to use it.

The dough is very sticky, so it will be harder to work with. I’m also learning to add the starter at the end of the mixing process, because it’s so sticky, it sticks to the bottom of my stand mixer bowl, and doesn’t want to separate even after the dough has come together. Josh and I had fun rolling out the pretzels, but we weren’t great at making consistent pretzels. Practice makes perfect! And before I baked, I didn’t add anything to the pretzels. That is why they came out so pale. I baked the pretzels for 25 minutes, saw how pale they were, pulled them out, added some butter on top of each and baked for another 5 minutes, and that is where the only color came from. Oil from the beginning would have helped with this, or you could get the malt mix so you could make classic pretzels with a dark, hard crust on them.

  1. In a bowl, add 1 1/2 cups flour, 1 Tbsp sugar, 1 cup warm water. Stir until combined. Add 1 cup of starter. Mix until it comes together. Add up to an extra 1/2 cup flour if the dough won’t come together, it should remain very sticky as a dough.
  2. Grease your bowl, turn your dough to be covered in oil, then let raise for 1 hour. It will only rise a little. Spray cookie sheets with non-stick spray.
  3. Heat oven to 350 F.
  4. Grease a clean counter top. Knead and deflate dough. Divide into 12 pieces. Roll out each ball into a long string about 18 inches long. On the counter, cross the ends, then lay the ends over the loop, shaping your pretzel. Transfer to cookie sheet.
  5. Brush tops of pretzels with oil and top with coarse salt (or mix equal sugar and water and brush over pretzels for darker coating).
  6. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes before eating.

Homemade Calzone From Starter

I make pizzas, calzones, and strombolis relatively often. I try to improve the recipe every time I make it. I will admit, adding sauce to the calzone not only makes the dish messier to make, but it also leaves the bottom crust soggy. However, this calzone is juicy compared to my stromboli recipe. I have to admit I’m torn which is better.

I stuffed my calzone with diced ham and one small/medium onion I pulsed in a food processor. I added the onion raw and it cooked slightly during the process but still have the overwhelming onion flavor. Besides that, using this homemade starter had begun to give everything the sour dough taste I make with it, and it’s not working as efficiently as active dried yeast would work. I also used leftover spaghetti sauce instead of my usual homemade pizza sauce, but I would definitely just use the pizza sauce next time, just because the sauce I used had a cheesy flavor that didn’t compliment the dish. The sour flavor of the bread with the onion and the cheesy flavor in my sauce made this dish very weird to eat. I would recommend using no additional parmasean in this dish, and eliminating the onion if you plan to use this starter, just because it’s so much bitter flavor. If you use normal yeast, ham and onion are a great combination.

  1. Into a bowl, add 1 cup of starter dough, 1 1/2 Tbsp oil, and 2 cups flour. Mix into a dough adding additional water as needed. Then let rest covered about 1 hour, it will only rise slightly. Preheat oven to 400 F
  2. Punch down dough, remove from bowl, and roll out dough into round about 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick. It should have a diameter of 16-20 inches.
  3. Spray your baking sheet with non stick spray, if applicable, and place your dough on top.
  4. To make pizza sauce, open a small can (8 oz) of tomato sauce and add 1 Tbsp of garlic powder, 1 1/2 tsp of onion salt, 2 Tbsp Italian seasoning, and 1 Tbsp oregano.
  5. Top dough with tomato sauce, 8 oz of mozzarella, and other toppings over the entire top of the dough. Fold the dough in half and pinch the edges together and rolling them in. Add slits on top with a knife to allow steam to escape. Bake for 20 minutes. Let rest for 10 minutes before cutting and serving.