Indulge in a Cross-Seasonal Fusion of Creamy Chestnut Ravioli with Browned Butter and Thyme

By: Caitlyn Callegari
Show: Chopped
Chestnut Ravioli with Browned Butter and Thyme

Chestnuts may typically give off a distinct holiday-season vibe, but the Food Network Kitchen chefs are changing that, looking to welcome in fall with an innovative twist. This week's Chopped Dinner Challenge, Chestnut Ravioli with Browned Butter and Thyme, replaces a beloved fall favorite, butternut squash, with a winter-esque basket ingredient, canned chestnuts. To evoke an uncanny butternut squash texture out of those chestnuts, first drain them, reserving the liquid from the can, and finely grind them. Next, add ricotta, Parmesan, the reserved liquid and an egg, and then blend for an enticing ravioli filling.

Start by heating the drained chestnuts in the microwave with water for about 3 minutes or until they're soft. Once that's done, add a tablespoon of the reserved liquid and finely grind the chestnuts. Then, add the Parmesan, the ricotta, and a large pinch of salt and pepper, and blend it all together. Once smooth, taste and season as needed. After, add an egg and mix until the ingredients have meshed. Put it in a mixing bowl and reserve.

Then, boil a large stockpot of salt water. In the meantime, prepare the ravioli: Whisk the other egg with water and then lay out 5 wonton skins on a lightly floured surface. Brush the wonton skins with the egg mixture and then scoop a tablespoon of the chestnut filling and put it in the middle of each of the wonton skins. Next, take 5 more wonton skins to cover the existing ones, and fuse them together by softly pressing the skins together. Then, use a flour-coated cookie cutter to cut around the filling. Put the ravioli on a parchment-covered baking sheet and place a damp paper towel over them.

For the brown butter sauce, put the garlic, butter and thyme together in a straight-sided saute pan. Set over medium heat until butter starts to bubble and foam, stirring occasionally. Cook until the foam dissipates and brown specks take its place, and then stir constantly for about 1 to 2 minutes. Turn off the heat and cover the pan to keep it warm.

To cook the ravioli, add them to the boiling water in batches until they rise to the top. Use a slotted spoon to take the ravioli out of the water and put them into the brown butter sauce. Mix the ravioli in with the sauce.

Before serving, take the thyme and garlic out of the sauce and reserve the thyme. Divvy up the ravioli among 4 plates, and sprinkle the remaining cheese and thyme over the dishes. If you'd like, you can drizzle balsamic vinegar over the dish as well. For the last step, shave whole chestnuts over the plates.

The Chopped Dinner Challenge is a series of recipes showing you how easy it is to cook like a winning Chopped competitor. Every week, FN Dish will showcase a recipe created by Food Network Kitchen that uses at least one of the Chopped basket ingredients, plus basic grocery goods and simple staples. Consider it your very own Chopped challenge. Just take this frequent tip from the judges: Don't forget to season!

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