National tortellini day
February 13th, 2013
09:00 AM ET
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While you're frying up some eggs and bacon, we're cooking up something else: a way to celebrate today's food holiday.

If you liked it, then you should have stuffed a ring with it. Hands up for February 13, National Tortellini Day.

Depending on who's telling the tale, legend has it that the goddess Venus was traveling through Northern Italy with Bacchus, Mars, Jupiter or a combination thereof (or it was possibly Lucrezia Borgia, flying solo), and decided to stop at an inn for the night. Either abandonment or romantic frolicking ensued and a chivalrous or libidinous innkeeper peered in through the keyhole. He got an eyeful of Venus' (or Borgia's) nekkid navel and was so very moved as to craft a pasta tribute in its likeness.

Creepy, yes, but don't let that stand between you and a bowlful of this Emilia-Romagna masterpiece.

To make tortellini, roll and cut pasta dough into thin, two-inch squares or rounds, then heap a small amount of filling in the center. Ricotta seasoned with black pepper and nutmeg is a popular option, as are ground pork or veal with proscuitto, mortadella and Parmesan cheese. Feel free to get creative with the fillings and the seasonings, but take the time to master the wrapping technique.

Brush a wash of of egg mixed with 1/2 teaspoon water on the edges, then fold the dough in half, making a triangle or half moon (depending on the shape you've selected) and press the edges together to seal them. Then hold the sealed pocket with the rounded side toward you, draw the points together, overlap them and press to seal into a ring shape. Ecco - tortellini!

Make about 20 per person and let them sit for an hour or two before cooking in rich broth for a classic tortellini en brodo. Or, boil them briefly in salted water and serve with brown butter and sage, a simple tomato or vodka sauce or fresh, pungent pesto.

soundoff (5 Responses)
  1. win 7

    thanks for you win 7 home.

    February 22, 2013 at 7:33 am |
  2. VladT

    Would not even attempt to make them as my hands shake from a medication side effect, however....

    Happy Tortellini day, peoples

    February 13, 2013 at 9:29 am |
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