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filled pasta pillows

Usually served as past'ascuitta with a sauce, although sometimes in soup. Usually square, though they can be round too. Ravioli go back at least to the Middle Ages (recent research in fact suggests they were invented in 6th-century Persia, in the court of the famously gourmet Sassanid ruler, Khosrow Anushirvan). They even appear in 14th-century English writings on cookery, as 'tartelettes', apparently derived from tortello.

There are variants with different names around Italy: agnolotti (Piedmont) tortelli or tordelli (Lombardy, Emilia-Romagna, Tuscany), cjalsons (Friuli, Venezia) and culurzones or culingionis in Sardinia, a name that recalls the original Persian, khushknanaj.

Ravioli are usually square and can be stuffed with meat, cheese, mushrooms, or just about anything—including potato, seafood, pumpkin and apples. Spinach and ricotta are perhaps the most common filling. Large ones can be called ravioloni.

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Le Marche



Pasta Shapes and Dishes



Text © Dana Facaros & Michael Pauls

Image by onceuponacuttingboard