Caramelle is one of my favorite pasta shapes. As the name implies, it looks like a wrapped candy! You can fill caramelle with all sorts of things (I love sweet corn, honeynut squash, porcini mushrooms, etc.) but this smoky ricotta filling is super simple to make and a bit more complex-tasting than a traditional plain ricotta filling. Brown butter + sage is a great sauce to pair with these bad boys because it’s nutty and herby, complimenting the savory filling. So without further ado….
Smoky Ricotta Caramelle
- Fresh egg dough (instructions/recipe here)
- 1 cup whole milk ricotta
- 1/3 cup fresh-grated parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup fresh-grated smoked cheese (gouda, provolone and mozzarella work great)
- S+P to taste
- Drizzle of olive oil
- 1 stick butter
- 16-20 fresh sage leaves
- Salt to taste
- Fresh-grated parmesan (optional)
*for the purpose of these instructions I’m going to assume your fresh pasta dough is made and resting!
- While your fresh pasta dough rests, make the filling by combining cheese, s+p and olive oil in a mixing bowl. Per usual, this recipe is adjustable so taste it and see what you think! If you want a smokier flavor, add more of the smoked cheese.
- Roll out the fresh pasta dough - more detailed instructions can be found via my Fresh Egg Pasta Dough post.
- Cut the sheet of dough into rectangles sized about 6cm x 3cm. If you have a bicicleta, it really comes in handy here (you can find one that I like via my Amazon store) but if not a straight edge + pizza cutter work
- Place about 1/2 - 1 teaspoon of filling at the bottom center of each square. If you have a pastry bag, that’s an easy/mess-free way to accomplish this but otherwise just use a 2 small spoons: 1 to scoop the filling, the other to scoop it off the spoon and onto the pasta sheet.
- Roll the rectangle around the filling like a cylinder. Then, using your two index fingers, “trap” the filling by pinching down on either side of it. Lastly, pinch the corners surrounding the filling upwards to create the candy wrapper effect. I realize this is hard to follow verbally so please find a video tutorial here!
- Keep going! Place the finished caramelle on a floured sheet pan. (PS: if you don’t want to make all the pasta, they freeze super well).
- Boil the caramelle for 4-5 until the dough is pleasantly al dente.
- While the caramelle are cooking, make the brown butter sauce. Heat butter in a skillet until it foams and starts smelling nutty, whisking continuously. Once it foams over, add sage leaves and that’s literally it!
- Using a slotted spoon or spider, add the caramelle to the brown butter sage sauce and toss. Plate and grate more fresh parm on top if you’d like
- *quick math: 1 serving = about 10 pieces of caramelle. I budget about 2 tbsp butter + 4-5 sage leaves per serving so calculate accordingly based on how much you are serving