Is there anything more delectable than homemade pasta?  Probably not, we concluded over dinner last night as we enjoyed the fruits of our afternoon’s labours. It’s annual family vacation time in Cape Cod, and son Adam & I carried on with the pasta-making tradition we began last year. This time we wanted to try a stuffed pasta, and settled on Ricotta and Herb Ravioli from Williams Sonoma’s website.

We had a hoot trying out the KitchenAid ravioli-maker attachment. Mid-afternoon, we made the pasta and left it to rest for about 2 hours before rolling it out. We chose setting “5” for the final iteration on the pasta roller, as we wanted a thinner, more delicate ravioli. Following the instructions, we inserted the folded end of each sheet into the roller, put the filling guide in place, and added the ricotta-basil filling.

Adam carefully turned the handle, and presto!  A sheet of ravioli squares emerged from the bottom. Using a wavy-edged pastry roller, we separated the squares and trimmed away the excess pasta on a lightly flour-covered board. We dusted the finished pieces with flour and placed them on a cookie sheet to await final cooking.

In a large braising pan, we made a simple tomato-basil sauce with olive oil, sauteed garlic, two cans of Italian tomatoes and lots of thinly sliced basil. Working in batches, we cooked the ravioli for about 3 minutes in a 12″ fry pan filled with about 2″ of boiling water, and then transferred each batch into the braising pan with the tomato sauce. Once all the pasta was cooked, we gently poured all the tomato sauce with the ravioli into a large serving dish and garnished it with some fresh basil leaves.

It was a gorgeous evening for dining outside, as the humidity of the last few days was beginning to lift.

Before we all dug in, our friend Scott posed the question to the chefs, “Was it worth the effort?”  The empty serving bowl a few minutes later was testament to the resounding “Yes!”