The Cinque Terre, as well as the gateway town of Levanto, is known for its miles of hiking paths, beautiful views, rocky cliffs, and charming coastal towns. In terms of gastronomy, the area may be best known for the famous pesto, as well as seafood dishes. But pasta is also an important part of the cuisine in the Liguria region, as it is in much of Italy.
During our cooking vacation Pesto, Pasta, and the Cinque Terre, Chef Alberto teaches guests all about the cuisine of the area in two hands-on courses. Some of those dishes include freshly-made pasta, such as this delicious pansoti (or pansotti) recipe, a type of wonderful Ligurian ravioli that you can replicate at home. This recipe for pansoti al sugo di noci (or ravioli with walnut sauce) makes six servings.
Pansoti al Sugo di Noci (Ravioli with Walnut Sauce)
Prep time: 90 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
Cook method: Boil
- 5 oz spinach or swiss chard (fresh or frozen)
- 1 1/2 tbsp butter
- 7 oz ricotta cheese
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp grated nutmeg
- 1 3/4 cup flour
- 3/4 cup water
- 1 tsp white wine
- 1 whole egg
- 1 egg yolk
- 20 marjoram leaves
- 1 peeled garlic clove
- 2 1/4 cups walnuts in their shells
- White bread without its crust and softened in milk
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 3 1/2 oz extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tbsp warm water
1. Start by making the ravioli stuffing. To do this, boil the spinach or swiss chard until they’re cooked. Drain them and squeeze out all excess water. Chop them finely.
2. Mix the vegetable with the ricotta, egg, parmesan cheese, nutmeg, and salt.
3. Now, it’s time to make the dough. Mix all the dough ingredients in a large bowl.
4. Form a ball and place it on a large flat surface. Next, knead it energetically until the dough is soft, elastic, and smooth. Cover the dough and let it rest.
5. After it’s rested for at least an hour, roll the dough into a thin sheet. Cut the dough into about three-inch squares.
6. In the middle of each square, place about a teaspoon of the filling.
7. Fold the square over diagonally to make a triangle, and seal the edges.
8. Join the corners of the triangle to make a ring.
9. Next, it’s on to the sauce! Shell the walnuts and break them roughly into pieces.
10. Place the nuts in a blender along with the softened bread, garlic, salt, and Parmesan cheese. Blend at a low speed until everything is finely chopped.
11. Add the oil and water a little bit at a time until a semi-dense sauce is created.
12. Cook the pasta in boiling, salted water for 10 minutes.
13. Drain the pasta, and dress it with the walnut sauce.
14. Serve immediately with some extra Parmesan cheese on the side.
This is just one of many recipes guests will learn more about during our Cinque Terre cooking vacation. Chef Alberto teaches a range of Ligurian dishes, such as vegetables quiches, pesce alla figure, and pansoti. Many of the ingredients guests cook with, in fact, come from the agriturismo’s property, where they still cultivate everything manually.
In addition to the cooking classes, guests will also tour Levanto and spend some time in the stunning Cinque Terre area.
By Liz Hall
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