Pasta dough disks
Date, Ricotta & Parmesan Filling
Filling the pasta disks
Shaping the filled pasta disks
Pasta ready to go into its jacuzzi
The end result
1 Container of whole milk ricotta cheese - 15 oz (425g)
15 to 20 large, plump dates
2 TBSP fresh grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
If you have a food processor (I am jealous) put your ricotta in and add the dates pulsing to ensure the dates are integrating evenly into the cheese. Then add the remaining ingredients until they are well integrated.
If you (like me) do not have a food processor, start by dicing your dates as small as possible. Place your ricotta in a medium sized mixing bowl. Add the diced dates and integrate them into the cheese as evenly as possible. Incorporate the rest of the ingredients into this mixture as evenly as possible.
Set filling aside and get your pasta ready.
After you make your dough separate a third of the dough, set the remainder aside and take the necessary precautions to ensure the rest remains moist. Roll out your dough until it is about 1/8 of an inch thin or thinner if possible (the thinner the less time it will take for the pasta to cook through).
Once the dough is well rolled use a circular cookie cutter (about 3" diameter max recommended) to cut out as many dough disks as possible. Set disks aside ensuring that they remain moist by placing them in a container with a moist towel on top.
Repeat the steps above with the dough set aside earlier.
Now it is time to fill your pasta.
Place a small ball (about 1/3 the diameter of your pasta disk) in the center of the disk. Wet the edge of the pasta disk. Fold the disk pressing the edges of the disk firmly together starting at the top center and then doing one side at a time so that you will not trap air in the pocket where the filling was placed.
Shape the pasta into the tortellini shape by pinching and folding the sides.
Place the tortellinis on flat dishes or baking sheets in rows with some room between each piece so that they will not stick together.
The yield on the tortellini will probably be about 4 1/2 dozen
At this point you can either make your pasta or you can store it in your freezer in an air tight container for up to two weeks.
When you do decide to use it I recommend a nice garlic butter sauce, and top it off with fresh grated Parmesan.