2010 Christmas recipe: Ravioli with Piacentino cheese, Walnuts and Pasta amara
The 2010 LoveSicily Christmas recipe is my Ravioli with Piacentino cheese, Walnuts and Pasta amara (100% cocoa) served with a sage and butter sauce.
Produced with whole pasteurised sheep milk, it is flavoured not only with saffron but also black peppercorns.
I can assure you that combined with walnuts and a bitter touch of pasta amara (100% cocoa) as in my recipe, you get delicate yet flavorful tasting ravioli, perfectly enhanced by the simple sage and butter sauce.
Piacentinu Ennese is a renowned Pecorino cheese made with saffron exclusively in the area around Enna with historical references dating as far back as the 4th century when the historian Gallo mentioned the addition of saffron to cheese in a publication for the first time.
There are several tales surrounding its origins, my favourite one is the legend claiming that, around 1090, Ruggero il Normanno, worried about his wife Adelasia who had plunged into depression and asked local cheese makers to prepare some kind of cheese that could help her to get better. Considering that "crocus sativus", or simply saffron, was noted at the time for its anti-depressant and energising properties, they came up with the idea of adding a handful of the spice to the sheep milk.
Below you find a video explaining how I make my ravioli. Hope you enjoy them and let me know if Ruggero il Normanno was right and you really feel lifted up after dinner ;).