Ricotta Cavatelli with Venison Neck Ragu
- 250 g. ricotta cheese
- 400 g. all-purpose flour
- 100 g. semolina
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 pinch grated nutmeg (optional)
- 50 ml. water, if needed
- cavatelli machine or a wooden gnocchi board with lined grooves
- mixing bowl
Place all ingredients in your bowl and mix with your hands until the dough comes together. Depending on the moisture content of the ricotta you are using, this recipe may not need water.
Transfer to a table and knead the dough until it is a firm smooth ball.
Cover with a damp cloth or plastic wrap and let rest for 30 minutes.
Cut dough into six equal size pieces.
Roll out into logs one-centimetre thick and partially flatten into strips.
Feed each strip of dough into the machine, while turning the handle.
Spread out dumplings onto a baking tray, dusting with extra semolina to keep from sticking.
If you do not have a cavatelli machine and are using a gnocchi board, follow instructions one and two. Then cut log into 0.5-centimetre rectangular slices and push dough downward on the gnocchi board with your thumb, curling the dough and creating a concave center with grooves on the outside.
- 1 kg. deboned venison meat (neck, shoulder or leg)
- 1 large spanish onion
- 1 carrot
- 2 stalks celery
- 6 roma tomatoes
- 200 g dried wild mushrooms
- 4 cloves garlic
- 350 ml. red wine
- 2 L. dark venison stock
- 1 bouquet garni (thyme, parsley, and bay leaves, tied with twine)
- 100 ml. olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- cutting board
- chefs’ knife
- large skillet
- roasting pan
- butcher twine
Cut vegetables into medium dice. Crush and mince garlic.
Season venison meat generously with salt and pepper.
Add oil to the hot skillet and add venison to the pan. Do not flip until the meat is caramelized and brown.
Transfer to a roasting pan, then add vegetables to the skillet. Sauté until beginning to caramelized. Add minced garlic and stir. Deglaze with red wine.
Transfer vegetables to roasting pan, add stock and bouquet garni, dried mushrooms and cover with foil.
Bake at 163 C (325 F) for 2.5 hours or until meat is tender. Pick meat with a fork into large pieces and leave in the liquid to cool.
To finish the plate
- 1 cup diced butternut squash
- 1 cup diced turnip
- 1 cup diced parsnip
- 1 bunch kale
- 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 2 tbsp. unsalted butter
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- salt to taste
- two large pots
- pasta basket/colander
- wooden spoon
- cutting board
- chef’s knife
Fill one of the pots with salted water and bring to a boil.
Dice the root vegetables. Tear kale off stem and roughly chop.
Heat second pot and sauté the vegetables until tender in the butter and olive oil.
To the vegetables, add the braising liquid from the neck and pulled venison meat. Reduce until thick.
Cook the fresh cavatelli in the pot of boiling water for three to five minutes.
Transfer cavatelli to the ragu, stirring with the wooden spoon. Add cheese and cook for an additional two minutes.
Spoon into serving bowls and top with more grated parmesan.