Breaking News
More () »

Creating colorful pasta without artifical dye

Parents know getting kids to eat their vegetables can be a challenge.

One local mom decided to get creative with her cooking, and the results are pretty stunning!

She's created all sorts of different colored pastas, all made with natural vegetable dyes.

Linda Miller Nicholson stopped by New Day NW to show us how she does it.

To see more of Linda's creations, check out her Instagram and Facebook pages!

Floral Ravioli with Thyme Browned Butter

When most people think of joy, adorable things like puppies, kittens, and flowers come to mind. Even I am not crazy enough to try and cram puppies and kittens betwixt sheets of pasta, however, so I like to bring joy to the world using flowers instead- aren’t you relieved? This recipe is awesome for testing out the basic dough sheeting skills you learned in section three. Sometimes folks skim over the basic dough in favor of the oohs and aahs of the colored doughs, but that’s a mistake, because learning manual proficiency with this dough will enable you to do really cool things with it. Like smoosh flowers inside.

When you make stunning pasta filled with delightfully-rich ingredients like fresh cheese and egg yolks, you don’t need to dress it up like a stuck pig at the county fair. Instead, keep the sauce simple and elegant like this thyme browned butter with just one unexpected note of flair. In this case it’s the thyme instead of traditional sage, because thyme complements the tang in farmer’s cheese perfectly.

Makes 6 large ravioli


For the ravioli:

* 1 cup farmer's cheese

* 1 cup mashed potatoes

* 1 tsp salt

* ½ tsp black pepper

* 1 lb basic egg dough, sheeted (the page number of that dough recipe referenced here)

* 6 edible flowers such as pansies or nasturtiums (homegrown is best so you can be sure they are not chemical-laden)

* 6 egg yolks (do not crack eggs until stated)

* 1 egg white

* Flour as needed for dusting your surface

* Water as needed for keeping pasta sheets hydrated

For the thyme browned butter

* 8 tbsp butter (prefer Kerrygold or similar)

* 1 tbsp chopped fresh thyme

For service

* 4 oz Parmigiano Reggiano grated on a microplane

* Freshly-ground pepper, as desired

1. Mix the first four ingredients in a bowl until well-combined. Using your hands, divide the mixture into six even portions. Roll them into balls. Make a depression in each ball that is the size of an egg yolk. Store them in the refrigerator until ready to use.

2. Cut pasta sheets into twelve 4"x4" squares. Cut remaining sheets into six 5"x5" squares. Work with two 4x4 squares at a time and keep the remaining squares covered so that they do not dry out. Lay one square down as a base and brush with a little water. Attach flower petals to the base sheet in a pattern you like. You can play with patterns by mixing up different flower petals on one sheet, scattering them at random, or closely sticking to the original shape of the flower you plucked the petals from. Once you have a pattern you like, cover the sheet with another sheet. Re-roll these sheets until they are 5"x5" squares.

3. Once you have all six of the flower tops made, remove the cheese mixture from fridge. Lay out your six bottom (plain) sheets and place a cheese nest on each one. Crack one yolk into the first cheese nest and use the remaining white as an egg wash to brush over the base sheet of pasta so the top sheet sticks to it. Gently drape the top sheet over the cheese nest and base sheet. Cut into desired raviolo shape- circles or squares work best. Repeat with remaining ravioli. Store in fridge on a sheet of parchment paper that has been dusted with flour until ready to use.

4. For the thyme browned butter, in a medium skillet over medium heat, cook the butter and thyme until the butter is fragrant, nutty, and just beginning to brown, about 4 minutes.

5. Boil the ravioli in salted water for four minutes if you like soft eggs, or five minutes if you prefer your eggs a little more cooked. Remove each raviolo with a slotted spoon and serve immediately, liberally drenched in thyme browned butter, Parmigiano, and optional freshly-ground black pepper.