Can’t be bothered spending 5 hours in the kitchen preparing and filling your own ravioli? Maltagliati is the answer!
Originating from the region of Emilia-Romagna in Northern Italy, maltagliati means badly cut (male taglio). This is a flat pasta of irregular shapes, similar to a trapezoid or a parallelogram. In older times, maltagliati was the leftover bits or the offcuttings of pasta that result from a day of pasta making. Like fingerprints, no two pieces are alike. Since it is possibly started as food for the poor, recipes for maltagliati generally are very simple and combined with simple and inexpensive ingredients. The most classic use of maltagliati is in bean or minestrone soup. The random shapes of maltagliati pasta have become so popular today that some companies actually deliberately manufacture this pasta, rolling out large sheets of dough and cutting them into rough trapezoids. Like any other pasta type, maltagliati can come in a range of flavors, depending on what has been added into the pasta dough.
How to prepare the pasta dough:
On a flat surface, sift the flour and dig a hole in the center into which the eggs will be added. Start mixing with a fork and incorporate the flour little by little. Once the flour is all mixed with the yolks, start mixing using your hands until the mixture is well homogeneous. Add the saffron, the parmesan and season with salt. If needed, add some water. Form the dough into a ball and wrap it inside a plastic wrap. Let it rest aside for at least 20 minutes and prepare the stuffing. For the pasta making, dust your work surface with some flour. Take a lump of dough and press it with your fingertips. Set the pasta machine at its widest setting and roll the pasta dough though it. If the pasta sticks, dust it with flour. Click the pasta machine down a setting and roll the dough through again. Fold the pasta in half, click the pasta machine back up to the widest setting and roll the dough through again. Repeat this process four to five times. The pasta dough becomes smooth and workable like that. Now it’s time to roll the dough out properly, working it through all the settings on the machine, from the widest down to the narrowest. Dust both sides of the pasta with some Cecco flour every time you roll it through the machine. When you’ve got down to the narrowest setting, fold the pasta in half lengthwise, then in half again, and again once more until you’ve got a square piece of dough. Turn it 90 degrees and pass it through the machine at the widest setting. As you roll it down through the settings for the last time, you should end up with a nice rectangular sheet of dough with straight sides. If your dough is a little cracked at the edges, fold it in half just once, click the machine back two settings and feed it through again.
How to prepare the Maltagliati:
Lay a dough sheet on a flat surface and dust lightly with flour. Use a knife or a pasta cutter and beginning in the upper left corner, make a series of diagonal cuts, approximately parallel to each other. No need to worry about it being a perfect straight line. Once done, starting in the upper right corner, make diagonal cuts going the other way, repeatedly, you will end up with numerous triangles and trapezoids, no two exactly alike.
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