squash-filled ravioli, leek, sage, habanada, parmesan


On Tuesday I had intended to prepare a sauce for a dry pasta, but I couldn’t decide on which sauce or which pasta, and it was getting late, so I thought it might be time for the package of filled pasta I had in the freezer; the sauce suggested itself, and in fact almost made itself.

  • Rana butternut squash-filled dried tomato-pasta round ravioli, cooked until not quite al dente, introduced to a tin-filled high-sided thick copper saucepan in which one thinly-sliced baby leek and a bit of a home-dried heatless, orange Habanada pepper, both from Norwich Meadows Farm, plus about 15 fresh sage leaves from Eataly, had all been heated over medium heat with 2 or 3 tablespoons of butter until the butter had begun to turn nut-brown and the sage to shrivel, at which time one fourth to one third of a cup of water was added and the mixture stirred, becoming loose and a little soupy, cooked (about 30-45 seconds, or until some of the water is absorbed and the pasta perfectly done), half of a cup of grated Parmigiano-Reggiano Vache Rosse from Eataly tossed in and stirred, now making the sauce somewhat creamy, the contents of the pan seasoned liberally with pepper and salt to taste and served, with more cheese at the table
  • the wine was an Italian (Campania) white, Fattoria La Rivolta Taburno Falanghina del Sannio 2015 from Chelsea Wine Vault


  • the music was Alfred Schnittke’s last symphony, No. 9 (completed by Alexander Raskatov), Owain Arwel Hughes conducting the Cape Philharmonic Orchestra, followed by Schnittke’s own version of his extraordinary 1977 ‘Concerto Grosso No 1’, reconfigured in 1977 with solo parts for flute and oboe, in this recording also supported by the Cape Philharmonic Orchestra under Hughes

[the 1972 portrait of Alfred Schnittke is by Reginald Gray, and appears on Schnittke’s Wikipedia entry]