My first and last morels recipes this year were made fresh pasta. Both of them could be named the same — “Into the Woods”. I wanted to create visuals that would be in complete harmony with the taste.
Ramps Pasta with Morels
Fresh pasta dough is the same for both dishes — with ramps puree. Green ramps tops can be substituted with spinach, parsley, dill, or any combination. Other greens give the same color to the dough, but different flavor, which is never strong in cooked pasta anyway. The idea for vertical lasagna with morels comes from another wonderful recipe — Bourgeois Rose. It is more time consuming and laborious than making linguini, but it’s worth it. The result is delicious and visually stunning.
Mix and knead the dough. Cover it with plastic food wrap and leave to rest in room temperature for 1 hour. You will need only half of the dough for this recipe. Keep the rest covered and refrigerated for up to 3 days for making other pasta dishes. (This step can be done in advance. It takes about 5 minutes to make a dough. If you make it in the morning, wrap and refrigerate it till you ready to continue.)
Start cooking velute. Use a whisk. Stir it from time to time. After 20-25 minutes taste it. Season, adjust to your taste, strain. Add brie and mix well. When it cools down to room temperature, fill a squishy bottle or a pastry bag and refrigerate. (This step can be done in advance.)
Using pasta maker, fold and stretch half of the pasta dough a few times with the thickest setting for a dial. After making sure the dough is smooth and strong, roll two long paper-thin sfoglias.
Boil 1 gallon of water with 2 tbsp salt. Prepare a large bowl of ice cold water. Cook sfoglias for 30 seconds and place them in cold water. When they cool down to room temperature, place them on the table and remove excess water with paper towels. Be gentle!
Prepare ramekins. Make parchment paper circles to cover their bottoms. Spray or brush oil inside ramekins. Preheat oven to 350F. Prepare morels and thyme.
Evenly squeeze the sauce on both sfoglias. Place morels on one long half of each sfoglia. Sprinkle with fresh picked thyme.
Fold the other half and evenly squeeze more sauce on the top. Roll two lasagnas. Place them into the ramekins. Spray or brush the top with oil or melted butter. Cook for 25 minutes.
Let lasagnas cool down to room temperature, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 6 hours and for up to 3 days. Before serving, remove the plastic wrap, cut vertically in half, reheat till the internal temperature reaches 155F.
This recipe makes two large pasta roses for two 4 1/2″D, 2″H ramekins.
Sfoglia (pronounced "sfo-lee-ah") means "to thumb through" in Italian and refers to a variety of handmade fresh egg pasta dough native to Emilia-Romagna. It is made using just flour and eggs, then rolled paper-thin by hand using a wooden rolling pin, which helps the pasta develop its distinct textural characteristics.