THE FRIDAY NIGHT RECIPE: TORTELLI RICOTTA&SPINACI

Hello! This Friday is “Handmade Pasta Time” so I prepared a classic version of tortelli filled with ricotta cheese and spinach. Do you like pasta? To me is one of my favourite dish!Let’s start the preparation…

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INGREDIENTS: (35-40 tortelli)

FOR THE PASTA:
– Flour 00: 250 g
– 2 big eggs and 1 yolk
– Salt

FOR THE FILLING:
– Spinach: 250 gr
– Ricotta: 125 gr
– Parmigiano Reggiano cheese: 50 gr
– Nutmeg:  1/4 teaspoon
– Salt
– Pepper

PREPARATION:

First start with the preparation of the pasta. Sift the flour and make a fountain with it on a wooden worktop. To make a fountain means make a hole in the center of the flour to add the eggs in the center: now you can start knead, melting the eggs and the flour with a fork initially, then by hands. Add also a pinch of salt. Be careful to amalgamate all the flour. If  you notice that the dough doesn’t collect well all the flour, or if it remains slightly tough, add one or two spoon of lukewarm water, then keep kneading till the dough will became smooth and compact. Roll up the obtained pasta in the plastic wrap and let it rest in a cool and dry place for 50-60 minutes.

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In the meanwhile, you can prepare the filling: first of all, cook the spinach in hot water and salt. Pour the ricotta and the parmigiano cheese in the mixer, together with the nutmeg, salt and pepper. When the spinach are boiled, squeeze them to eliminate the excess water, and put them too in the mixer. You’ll obtain a green, homogenized mixture.
After an hour, the pasta will be more soft and elastic: now you can start to spread out the dough. Put some flour on the wooden worktop and use a rolling pin to work the pasta. This operation made only by hands is a bit hard to achieve, especially if it’s your first time. You can help yourself using a pasta-maker (the famous “nonna papera” here, in Italy) to obtain a pastry sheet of 0,5 mm depth.

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To make the tortelli, you cut the pasta sheet in stripes of 10 cm width, putting small quantities of filling on it – help yourself with a teasppon – well separated one from another. Then put another stripe of pasta on the filled one and press well on the edges to eliminate the air bubbles. Now you cut the filled pasta in squares of 4×4 cm. – I made instead an half moon cut, as you can see. – You can cook them right after the preparation or freeze them on a tray, putting them wide apart. I served them with chopped carrots, zucchini and green celery, cooked in a frypan with onion and extra-virgin olive oil. I added as final touch some roasted chopped bacon.

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Buon Appetito!Cris

EXPO BY NIGHT

Hello! Expo is running to the end, do you had the opportunity to go? I would like to know more about your impressions, sensations, experiences towards this event…We were lucky to visit it already in June, because during these weeks there are just too much people…anyway, these are the photos of our last Friday in Milan…Goodbye Expo, I’m glad that I visited you!

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TULUM AND COBÀ

Hello! Let’s continue our itinerary paying a one day visit to Tulum and Cobà Mayan ruins. This is a classic excursion, so, it’s possible that there will be lot of people visiting in the same time as you. I must say that just entering the archeological sites is exciting, ’cause the ruins are both just in the middle of the jungle.

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Tulum is one of the most important archeological site, and the only one located on the ocean. It is one of the earliest settlement in Mexico, offering a place of worship and solitude for the Mayan Kings. Its tropical beach is the main attraction of this picturesque, small ruins on the shore of the Caribbean Sea. To avoid the crowds, it’s best to visit the ruins early in the morning before the buses arrive, or later in the afternoon.

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With an estimated population of 1,000 to 1,600 inhabitants, Tulum is the location of a Pre-Columbian Maya walled city, serving as major port for Cobà. Tulum was one of the last cities inhabited and built by the Maya. From numerous depictions in murals and other works around the site, Tulum appears to have been an important site for the worship of the Diving or Descending god. 

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Even when crowded, it’s not hard to imagine the city of thousand years ago, thanks to the well-preserved buildings of the site. Today, the buildings and the surroundings are the iguanas’ home: they will appear in many places during your visit, and you could even touch them. (i did, they’re peacefull and “used” to tourists, don’t worry!)

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Tulum has the typical architecture of Mayan sites on the east coast of the Yucatan Peninsula. This architecture is recognized by a staircase running around the base of the building, which sits on a low substructure. The doorways of this type are usually narrow, with columns used as pillar if the building is big enough. In the inside there are usually two sets of molding near the ceiling. You could clearly see in some parts that Maya used to colour walls with red or light-blue painting. Researchers could suppose that rooms in the main buildings usually contained one or two small windows with an altar at the back wall. This type of architecture resembles what can be found in the nearby site of Chichen Itza, just on a much smaller scale.

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Cobà ruins too surely worth a visit: it’s another large ruined city of the Pre-Colombian Maya civilization. The buildings aren’t in as pristine shape as the Tulum Ruins, however their feature is “El Castillo” the tallest pyramid of all the Mayan ruins that juts up above the treetops in the jungle.

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Climbing the Castillo is a “must do” of the excursion, and the sight from the top is spectacular. (the last photo in this article is the view from the top of the pyramid – exciting, isn’t it?) We explored the ruins by walk, but you could also rent a bike, just go to the rental place inside the ruins, at the entrance. Coba is only a 30 minutes drive west of tulum, always following the main road. In Cobà you could also admire the area where took place the “juego de la pelota” (Ball game), a small one compared to that of Chichen Itza.

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to be continued..