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Make it fresh: Giada's four-cheese ravioli with herb pesto

Here, Giada De Laurentiis shows you how to make two dishes and a delicious drink using fresh and flavorful herbs that can be found in your backyard. Try a herb salad, a four-cheese ravioli with herb pesto and a herb and orange negroni.

Herb salad
Servings:

Makes 4 to 6 servings

Ingredients

    • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
    • 2 teaspoons dijon mustard
    • 1 teaspoon honey
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt, plusmore for seasoning
    • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more for seasoning
    • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
    • 1 bunch flat-leaf parsley, stemmed (about 3 cups)
    • 1 bunch fresh basil, stemmed (about 3 cups)
    • 1 bunch fresh chives, chopped
    • 1 bunch fresh tarragon, stemmed (about 1/2 cup)
    • 1 cup arugula leaves
    • 1 fennel bulb, halved, cored, and thinly sliced
    • Edible flowers, for garnish

Preparation

Baking Directions:

In a blender or food processor, combine the vinegar, mustard, honey, salt, and pepper until well mixed. With the machine running, gradually add the olive oil until the dressing is smooth and creamy. Set aside. In a large bowl combine the herbs, arugula, and fennel. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Toss the salad with enough dressing to coat. Sprinkle with edible flowers and serve.

Four-cheese ravioli with herb pesto
Servings:

Makes 4 to 6 servings

Ingredients

  • Herb pesto

    • 1 packed cup fresh basil leaves
    • 1/2 packed cup fresh mint leaves
    • 1/2 packed cup of fresh Italian parsley leaves
    • 1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted* see Cook's Note
    • 1 clove garlic
    • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    • 1 tablespoon anchovy paste
    • 1/2 cup (1 1/2 ounces) grated Parmesan cheese
    • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Ravioli filling

    • 11/2 cups (12 ounces), fresh whole-milk ricotta cheese
    • 3/4 packed cup (3 ounces) coarsely grated mozzarella cheese, at room temperature
    • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, at room temperature
    • 1/4 cup mascarpone cheese, at room temperature
    • 1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
    • 1/4 cup plain breadcrumbs
    • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
    • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    • 1 egg, beaten
    • 1 teaspoon water
    • 35 store-bought wonton wrappers
    • 11/2 tablespoons kosher salt
    • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Preparation

Baking Directions:

For the pesto: In a food processor, combine the basil, mint, parsley, pine nuts, garlic, pepper, anchovy paste and Parmesan cheese. Pulse until chunky. With the machine running, gradually add the olive oil until the pesto is smooth.For the ravioli filling: In a medium bowl, mix together the cheeses, nutmeg, breadcrumbs salt, and pepper. In a small bowl, mix together the egg and water until smooth. To form the ravioli: Using a pastry brush, lightly brush the edges of the wonton wrappers with the egg mixture. Spoon 1 level tablespoon of the filling into the center of each wonton wrapper. Fold the opposite corners of each wonton wrapper over to form triangle shapes. Seal the edges firmly, pressing out any air around the filling. (Can be made a few hours in advance. Cover with foil and refrigerate until ready to use.) Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Add 11/2 tablespoons salt and 2 tablespoons of olive oil. In batches, add the ravioli to the water and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender but still firm to the bite, about 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, carefully remove the ravioli and drain in a colander. Transfer the ravioli to shallow soup bowls. Spoon the sauce over the ravioli and serve.

Tips:

Cook's Note: To toast the pine nuts, arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake in a preheated 350 degrees F oven for 6 to 8 minutes until lightly toasted. Cool completely before using.

Herb and orange negroni
Servings:

Makes 4-6 servings

Ingredients

  • Herb and orange negroni

    • 1 cup herb-infused vodka, recipe follows
    • 3/4 cup fresh orange juice
    • 1/2 cup sweet vermouth
    • 1/2 cup sparkling water (optional)
    • 1/4 cup bitters, recommended: Campari
    • Ice
    • Fresh thyme sprigs and orange slices to garnish
  • Herb-infused vodka

    • 4 (6-inch-long) stems fresh rosemary
    • 8 (6-inch-long) stems fresh oregano
    • 8 (4-inch-long) stems fresh thyme
    • 1 (750 ml) bottle vodka

Preparation

Baking Directions:

Herb and orange negroni:In a pitcher, stir together the vodka (see instructions below), orange juice, vermouth, sparkling water, if using, and bitters. Pour into 4 iced-filled old-fashion glasses and garnish with a sprig of fresh thyme and an orange slice.Herb-infused vodka: In a pitcher, combine the rosemary, oregano and thyme. Using a wooden spoon, gently crush the herbs. Add the vodka and cover the pitcherwith plastic. Store at room temperature for at least 24 hours. Strain before using.

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