If it's an emulsion, I'm here for it
A recipe for pea and mint triangoli with butter sauce and cured yolk
Pasta Sunday is a reader-supported publication. To receive new posts and support my work, consider becoming a free or paid subscriber.
Hello and happy Sunday - I hope you’ve been having a splendid weekend thus far. Welcome to issue 24 of Pasta Sunday, my little slice on the interwebs where I share with you a new recipe that centres around the joy of making fresh pasta at home. Won’t you join me on this journey of flour and eggs today?
It’s been a while since I brought you a stuffed pasta (in fact, the last time was in issue 16! - the travesty of it), but I have returned from my plump pillow hiatus and have a fabulous recipe for you today - triangoli stuffed with pea, ricotta and mint. Heaven. We’ll bathe it in my absolute favourite butter emulsion which I’ll ramble on about further below.
I’ve also got a very quick and easy side for paid subs today which I like to call a deli special - she’s pretty, delicious and looks far more considered than she is. I am all about simple cooking and letting ingredients wow and delight in harmony.
Shall we continue?
Pea and Mint Triangoli with Butter Sauce and Cured Yolk
I am the type of person who goes through phases. I always seem to have some kind of current obsession and usually it’s to do with food; a salad I can’t stop eating on repeat, a particular type of protein, a single ingredient I try to hero in everything. At the moment, it’s mint.
The flavour of mint holds a lot of nostalgia for me. When I think back to some of my earliest food memories in Cyprus, I specifically relate the presence of mint to the mixture of halloumi/mint used to lightly coat thick tubes of macaroni in pastitsio. Iconic dish, btw.
So yeah, I guess you could say I’ve had a thing for it recently. While I originally hadn’t accounted for mint in this recipe, I quickly decided it was vital for it to be included. Pea and mint after all, is an iconic food pairing. It “tastes like England in June”, writes Niki Segnit in The Flavour Thesaurus1 - and I couldn’t agree more.
As far as stuffed pasta goes, triangoli are up their with my absolute favourite. Firstly, because they’re easy to shape. Secondly, you can fit a nice amount of filling within its folds. Thirdly - and as Paddy pointed out to me while I was making these - the pointy ends and ‘seam’ around the filling add a beautiful and slightly contrasting texture - you get pasta, AND stuffed pasta.
To make these it couldn’t be more simple, we start with a filling of peas (quickly sautéed with a shallot), ricotta, Parmigiano Reggiano and mint. Once the pasta is ready to roll, squares are cut and quickly folded into beautiful geometric bites of bliss. Then finally, we come to finish - a butter sauce.
I have spoken about emulsions time and time again. I don’t know what it is about emulsions that I love so dearly. Perhaps it’s the fact that you can make something texturally fantastic by combining two ingredients that wouldn’t ordinarily mix together. It feels poetic, and also like a smug accomplishment. The satisfaction I get from making the perfect butter sauce is unparalleled. Of course, you can make a burnt butter for these triangoli, or simply toss through some butter to coat them gently at the very end, but I guarantee neither option will feel as luxurious as a proper, emulsified butter sauce. Is this another food obsession of mine? Absolutely, and it’s long term.
A cured egg yolk adds the most wonderful salty sucker punch that offsets the sweetness of the peas in the filling. If you CBA to cure yolks, just use Parmigiano to serve.
Serves 4 - makes around 80+ triangoli (leftovers can be frozen for another time)
Cured egg yolks
6 eggs, yolks separated from the whites (save this whites and use them for other things!)
1 cup frozen baby peas
1 shallot, diced
40g Parmigiano reggiano
Handful chopped mint
1 x batch of my Master Pasta Dough
1/4 cup water
200g cold butter, cut into cubes (allow 50g butter per person)
Cured yolk - if you’re making this, you’ll need 2 weeks to cure and dry egg yolks. A bit of a faff and required planning ahead, but once you’ve made some they’ll keep for a few weeks refrigerated and can be used on pasta, toast, whatever you like.
Pour a layer of salt about 1 inch thick into a Tupperware large enough to contain all of your yolks but not so big that you’ll need kilos of salt to fill it.
Create 6 little grooves in the salt and carefully place a yolk in each one. Cover entirely with salt, again at least half an inch thick.
Cover the Tupperware and place in the fridge for one week.
After a week, carefully dust off the salt and very gently rinse any excess off each yolk and pat dry with kitchen paper. The yolks will be easy to handle but still a bit sticky as they haven’t been dried yet.
Place each yolk along the length of the cheesecloth, then roll the cheesecloth around them to cover. Use kitchen string to tie sections between each yolk and keep the cheesecloth secure and in place.
Dry the fridge in the fridge for another week. The yolks should be dry and firm but not rock solid.
Cured yolks will last 3-4 weeks in the fridge.
Heat a drizzle of EVOO in a pan and sauté the shallot for a couple of minutes until translucent.
Add the peas and a pinch of salt and continue cooking for a couple of more minutes.
Transfer to a blender and blitz until you have a smooth paste. Set aside to cool.
Combine the cooled pea mixture with the ricotta. Grate in the Parmigiano, and stir this through with the chopped mint. Season with a little black pepper before transferring to a piping bag and placing in the fridge until needed.
Make the pasta dough.
Once rested, divide the dough into four pieces. Work with one at a time - flatten the piece with your hand or a rolling pin before passing it through the thickest setting on your pasta machine. Fold the edges in to create a neat rectangle that fits the width of your pasta machine, and run it through the thickest setting again until your dough is uniform in shape
Continue passing your dough through the machine, working through each thickness setting until you get to setting 6 or 7, depending on your preference for thickness of stuffed pasta.
Use a bicycle cutter to cut equals squares of 5x5cm.
Pipe filling in the middle of each square, then fold on the diagonal and press to seal.
Set aside on a clean tea towel or baking sheet dusted with fine semolina until ready to use.
NB: If you don’t intend to cook these right away, I recommend flash freezing them on a tray then transferring them to an airtight container until you’re ready to cook.
Beurre monté and finishing touches
Bring a large pot of water to boil for your pasta, and season generously with salt.
Add a 1/4 cup of cold water and add to a large frying or sauté pan over a medium heat.
Once the water is boiling, reduce the heat and start to drop in a couple of cubes of cold butter, swirling the pan and whisking continuously until the butter is emulsified and uniform.
Once you have a stable emulsion, continue adding the rest of the butter, whisking, whirling and swirling.
Season with a pinch of salt.
Keep the pan on the most tiny of flames to keep warm, stirring occasionally.
Drop the triangoli into the boiling water and cooking for 2 minutes or longer if you are cooking from frozen.
Scoop out with a slotted spoon or spider, and drop directly into the butter sauce.
Gently whirl and toss to coat all of the triangoli in the sauce.
Allow 12-14 triangoli per person.
Serve with grated cured yolk, or if you can’t be bothered, just top with Parmigiano Reggiano :)
If you’re interested in learning a little more about this shape with a step by step photographic guide, drinks pairing and getting a recipe for my deli special side, then why not consider becoming a paid subscriber and help keep Pasta Sunday going - thank you ❤️
The Deli Special
Keep reading with a 7-day free trial
Subscribe to Pasta Sunday to keep reading this post and get 7 days of free access to the full post archives.