Baked ‘Nidi Di Rondine’
Baked ‘Nidi Di Rondine’
For the Dry Pasta Dough
Combine the eggs, oil and salt. Place flour on a clean bench and create a well in the centre. Place the egg mixture in the middle. With one hand, gradually mix the flour into the eggs trying not to break the walls of the well. Knead dough for a couple of minutes until elastic. Wrap in cling film and rest out of the fridge if you are going to roll within an hour or two.
Split dough in two and roll out one piece at a time in a pasta machine, using flour and semolina whilst working it until it reaches desired thickness (very thin). Cut pasta into 10cm strips. Blanch pasta in boiling salted water for 2-3 minutes and refresh in iced water. Lay out flat (not touching each other as they will stick together) and put in fridge. Alternatively, use packet of pre-made lasagne sheets and blanch them as per fresh pasta.
For the Cheese Mousse
Pass the ricotta through a drum sieve to make it smooth. Beat in mascarpone and cream with a wooden spoon until it is very smooth. Add parmesan and season to taste. The mix should be thick but smooth and easily spreadable.
For the Vegetable Filling
Heat a large frying pan until very hot. Saute mushroom with thyme and garlic until coloured and tender. Season with salt and let cool. In a separate pan, saute the spinach over high heat until just cooked. Season with salt and let cool.
For the Assembly of Nidi
Lay each sheet of blanched pasta out vertically. Spread with an even, thin layer of cheese mousse leaving the last 1cm of pasta free. Top mousse with the mushrooms, then the spinach and the ham, ensuring all ingredients are spread evenly, sit flat and that there are minimal gaps. Roll each pasta sheet out vertically toward the blank end. Roll out to create a spiral of pasta and filling. Try to keep the roll tight and end on the blank piece to secure it closed. Brush with melted butter and optionally roll with glad wrap to create and nice round shape. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
For the Pea Puree
Sweat onion and pancetta in oil slowly until tender but not coloured. Once soft, add peas and boiling stock. Cook peas for 3-4 minutes until tender. Puree.
For the Crispy Onion
Slice onion very thinly on a mandolin into rings. Place into iced water for 10 minutes then drain and dry well. Coat evenly with corn flour. Heat oil to 150C and fry a small amount of onions at a time until crispy but not coloured (approximately 3-5 minutes). Drain onto paper towel and season with salt.
Slice each log into 3cm cylinders. Place the cylinders upright into a baking dish. Place a little stock or cream in the bottom. Place in the oven for 8 minutes on 180C. Check that they are hot in the middle. Top with fontina and put back in the oven until the cheese has melted. Warm pea puree and place on the bottom of the plate. Top with Nidi and crispy onion.
Recipe courtesy of Bottega.