I know, I know. Another pasta recipe! Insert a collective groan.....
I have an abundance of rainbow chard in my garden. That stuff just doesn’t die. I’ve had the same plants for over 3 years and they are still going strong. I’ve recently replanted them and after all the rain, they are flourishing like, well, rainbow chard.
Rainbow chard is ideal for anyone who considers them self a brown thumb. It’s easy to grow and takes very little maintenance. It’s very hardy, in fact it was one of the only plants that flourished throughout the crazy Perth summer. It’s a must for any kitchen garden.
And not only does it look damn sexy, it’s good for you. It’s packed with nutrients, and is especially high it vitamin K. According to the George Mateljan Foundation, this is one of the healthiest foods in the world. You can read about the health benefits of rainbow chard, or swiss chard here and here.
I use it all the time; it’s great in an omelette, stir fried or steamed in Chinese style dishes, on pizza, excellent for green smoothies or in salads, sauteed as a side dish or used in Italian style dishes in lieu of spinach.
Rainbow Chard Ricotta Tortellini- serves 4Filling 50g of fresh picked rainbow chard - works out to be about 3/4 of a cup when cooked and diced 1 garlic clove, minced 2 spring onions, finely diced 100g of ricotta cheese 20g of fresh grated parmesan or pecorino salt and pepper to taste
Pasta 200g of organic spelt flour 2 large free range eggs (approx 120g) (See my spelt pasta recipe for instructions on rolling out the pasta sheets.)
- Dice the chard up very finely and set aside in a bowl.
- Cut your spring onion lengthways into julienne, then dice very finely. Add to your rainbow chard.
- Add your minced garlic, ricotta, parmesan and salt and pepper to the bowl. Mix thoroughly and set aside in the fridge whilst you roll out your pasta sheets. (See here for pasta instructions.)
- As you roll out your pasta sheets, stack them between pieces of lightly floured baking paper. This will stop them from drying out too much.
- Using one sheet of pasta at a time, cut into squares and use a teaspoon to measure out small portions of your rainbow chard and ricotta filling. Place the filling in the centre of the pasta square.
- Dip your finger in some water and run it around the edges of the pasta squares. Then fold your pasta square in half over the filling. Gentle pinch the ends closed, making sure not to trap in any air.
- There are a few ways to fold the pasta into a tortellini shape. I prefer the wanton shape; it’s quick and easy and it doesn’t waste any of the pasta. To fold, take the two folded corners that are closest to the filling, then twist them around behind the filled end and press the edges to seal them in place.
- Place your rainbow chard ricotta tortellini onto lined floured trays. You can cover them and place in the fridge until your are ready too cook them. (Note: don’t cover with glad wrap, this will make the pasta sweat and fall apart - cover with more baking paper)
- Don’t stress if you have any left over pasta sheets or filling. The sheets can be dried and stored for lasagna, and the filling can be combined with eggs for an indulgent omelette.
- Cook your tortellini in boiling salted water. This should only take a few minutes, and they should float when they are nearly ready. (If your unsure, remove one and taste test to see if it’s al dente).
- To serve, gently toss your drained tortellini through a lovely homemade pasta sauce with fresh basil and parmesan to taste.
I made this for my girlfriend Kristen, who as you know is my human guinea pig. We downed it with my Zucchini Bacon Carbonara sauce and a a few generous glasses of wine. It was so good she asked for my hand in marriage..... too bad I’m taken!