I may have mentioned how during the pandemic I began to use more store-bought ingredients in my recipes because it made dinnertime that much easier. As it turns out, I discovered some pretty great pre-made pantry items, like ravioli, that taste and perform as good as my own made from scratch. Cheese ravioli found in the refrigerated section of most grocery stores can be turned into the most delightful of meals in a matter of minutes, especially when tossed in brown butter, crispy pancetta and fried sage.
Artisan brands and store brands that use specialty vendors and place their names on the packaging are what I recommend. Stores like Trader Joe’s, Costco and even farm box companies like Farm Fresh to You, partner with artisanal food companies that make quality products. The trick to making these ravioli taste like you are dining at a local Trattoria is in the sauce and let’s face it, anything with a little brown butter is a game changer in most recipes.
To start, boil the ravioli in a pot and reserve a bit of pasta water to enhance the sauce. Then, the fun part begins by crisping up pancetta and sage in a separate skillet, and reserving it until the dish is almost complete. Butter is then browned in the same pan until it almost resembles the color of caramel corn, and then it’s tossed with the freshly boiled ravioli until it’s well coated. The pancetta and sage join the skillet for a quick stir and dinner is served. I prefer to enjoy it family-style, right out of the pan.
12 ounces cheese ravioli
4 ounces diced pancetta
3 sprigs fresh sage
5 tablespoons salted butter
- Boil ravioli for 3-4 minutes, or until it just begins to float in pot. Reserve 1/2 cup pasta water, drain.
- In a non-stick skillet add pancetta and place over medium heat. Cook for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add sage leaves and stir. Cook for 1 minutes and remove pancetta and sage with slotted spoon.
- Add butter to same skillet and cook until butter melts and turns golden brown on bottom of pan, about 4 minutes. Add ravioli and toss. Add a few tablespoons of pasta water to the pan and cook for 1 minute until the ravioli are coated. Add more water if necessary.
- Add pancetta to skillet and stir. Place crispy sage on top and serve. Enjoy!