Naked spinach ravioli with macaroni and vegetable arrabiata dressing


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serve


Appears in

Pure Vegetarian

By Paul Gayler

Published 2006

  • About

In this recipe the ravioli filling is detached from its pasta casing, which is: served alongside in the form of macaroni. These are the lightest of spinach dumplings imaginable, topped with a deliciously spicy dressing.


  • 350 g fresh spinach, washed and stalks removed
  • 190 g good-quality ricotta cheese, well drained
  • 1 free-range egg
  • 300 g plain flour
  • 40 g freshly grated castelli vegetalia (parmesan-style cheese)
  • 200 g macaroni pasta (1 cm thick)
  • salt, freshly ground black pepper and nutmeg

For the Vegetable Arrabiata Dressing

  • 100 ml olive oil
  • 2 shallots, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 small dried red chillies, finely chopped
  • 1 large courgette, finely diced
  • 6 tomatoes, blanched, skinned, deseeded and chopped
  • 2 tablespoons stoned, chopped black olives
  • juice of ½ lemon
  • 50 g chopped fresh coriander
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper


Cook the spinach in a heated frying pan until wilted in its own juices. Transfer to a colander and squeeze out any excess liquid. Place in a blender and blitz to a pur6e. Transfer to a bowl. Add the ricotta, egg, flour and parmesan, season with salt, pepper, and nutmeg and stir. (If it’s too dry add 2 tablespoons of cold water.) Cover with clingfilm and refrigerate for 1 hour.

For the dressing, heat the olive oil in a pan, add the shallots, garlic and chillies and cook over a moderate heat for 30 seconds. Raise the heat, add the courgettes and fry for 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes and olives and cook for a further 2-3 minutes. Add the lemon juice and coriander and season to taste. Keep warm.

To make the dumplings, use floured hands to roll the spinach mix into small 1 cm balls. Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil, then carefully drop the dumplings into the water. When they rise to the surface (after a few minutes), remove them with a slotted spoon and drain well. Meanwhile, cook the macaroni in a large pan of boiling salted water until al dente. Toss the dumplings and pasta in the dressing, season to taste and divide between four serving bowls. Serve immediately.