One of my favourite restaurants in Rome is Trattoria Monti, which is owned by a family from Le Marche. The menu there was reflective of the nearby region, featuring fresh pastas and game in winter. It doesn't change much, as locals are staunchly devoted to their favourites - something we found in many of the family-run trattorie that characterize much of the dining scene. We had a huge tortello al rosso d'uovo, a large ravioli-type pasta filled with ricotta, spinach and a deep-orange egg yolk that breaks as you cut into it. It's a decadent dish, so one tortello per serving is enough.
- 6 cups packed baby spinach
- 1/2 cup ricotta
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- 4 sheets fresh pasta
- 4 egg yolks
- 1 egg beaten with a pinch of salt
- 1/2 cup butter
- 12 sage leaves
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan
Steam spinach until tender. Drain and squeeze out any water. Coarsely chop. Mix with ricotta and Parmesan and season well with salt and pepper.
Place a sheet of pasta on the counter and, using a plate as a guide, cut a 6-inch round with a sharp knife. Repeat until you have 4 rounds. Divide spinach-ricotta mixture into 4 portions. Spread one portion on one side of each round, leaving a small border. Make a well in mixture and slip in egg yolk. Brush the edge with egg wash and fold over to make a half-moon shape. Seal edges, removing any air pockets.
Bring a large shallow pot of water to boil. Add tortelli carefully and cook for 3 minutes, making sure yolks remain runny. Immediately remove from pan and place on serving plates.
Heat butter and sage together in a small skillet over low heat for 2 minutes or until butter is hot and melted. Add lemon juice and salt. Place one tortello on each serving dish and drizzle sauce over top. Sprinkle with Parmesan. Serve at once. Serves 4.