- 10 tablespoons (5 ounces) unsalted butter
- 1 pound fresh pumpkin, peeled and cut in 1-inch cubes
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1/2 bay leaf
- 2 tablespoons minced fresh sage, plus 6 small leaves for garnish
- 2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme leaves
- 2 eggs, beaten
- Freshly ground white pepper
- 1/2 recipe Spinach Pasta Dough or Regular Pasta Dough, recipe follows
- 1 egg, beaten lightly, for egg wash
- 2 cups chicken stock or light duck stock, recipe follows
- 2 shallots, chopped
Heat a saute pan over low heat and add 4 tablespoons of the butter. When the butter is foamy, add the cubed pumpkin and cook, stirring often to stop it from sticking and burning, until it softens and falls into a puree.
Turn the pumpkin into a saucepan, add 1/2 of the cream and half the herbs and cook over a low heat for approximately 1 hour, or until the puree is thick and the liquid has evaporated. Stir occasionally to prevent scorching. Remove from the heat and beat in an additional 2 tablespoons of butter. Whisk in the beaten eggs, season, to taste, with salt and pepper and set a side to cool.
On a floured surface, roll out the pasta as thin as possible. Cut into 2 sheets and brush 1 of them with egg wash. Using a teaspoon, place 24 equal mounds of the pumpkin puree on the egg-washed dough, about 2 inches apart. Cover the mounded dough with the second sheet of pasta and press around the mounds of pumpkin to seal the dough.
Using a ravioli cutter or a sharp knife cut the ravioli. Dust a tray with semolina and place the ravioli on it.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil, while you make the sauce.
Prepare the sauce: In a saucepan, reduce the stock with the shallots to 1/2 cup. Add the remaining cream and reduce by half. Over a low heat, whisk in the remaining 4 tablespoons butter, a little at a time, over low heat. Strain the sauce into a clean saucepan and add the remaining sage and thyme. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Add the ravioli to the rapidly boiling water and cook for 4 to 5 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain. Add the ravioli to the sauce and bring just to a boil. Correct the seasonings.
Divide the ravioli among preheated soup dishes and spoon the sauce over them. Garnish each serving with a fresh sage leaf. Serve immediately.
A simple but delicious alternative sauce can be made from fresh unsalted butter, minced fresh sage, and a little freshly grated Parmesan.