Thursday, September 19, 2013

Recipes For Halloween "Leftovers"-Early Edition

If you've been to any kind of general store lately, you've probably seen the Halloween displays. Never mind the fact that it's only September; stores don't seem to care. They sell all kinds of food items related to the holiday-pumpkins, big bags of candy, caramel apple kits etc. Some of us are wont to buy very much because we don't know what to do with all the “leftovers” we will invariably have. We can always eat the candy, but what about the pumpkins? What do we do with all the leftover face paint and wild-colored hair spray? I can't help you on the last two, but here are some ideas for the food-related “extras”.

If you want something unique to do with the pumpkin from the jack o'lantern, here's a recipe for pumpkin ravioli.

Pumpkin Ravioli-serves 4 to 6
For the sauce-
6 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons heavy cream
1 teaspoon chopped sage
½ teaspoon salt

For the ravioli itself-
15 ounces puréed pumpkin
1 package wonton wrappers, each cut into fourths
2 thinly-sliced leeks, white parts only
1 minced clove garlic
¼ cup crumbled goat cheese
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
salt and pepper, to taste

For garnish/serving-
1 cup arugula lettuce
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
¼ cup coarsely-chopped pecans

Lay out the wonton wrappers on a flour-covered surface.

For the filling, saute the garlic and leeks in the butter. Remove from heat add the goat cheese, pumpkin and olive oil.

On half of the wrappers, spoon out 1 teaspoon of filling and brush a little water along the edges. Then, to with one of the uncovered wrappers and press the edges together with a fork to make the 'crimped' pattern. Boil until tender, about 3 to 4 minutes.

For the sauce, melt the butter over low heat in a small pan. Stir in the cream, salt and sage. Once the ravioli is done, toss it in the sauce and serve with the arugula, pecans and Parmesan.

Tip: If you don't have any (or enough) puréed pumpkin, most grocery stores sell canned purée in the baking-goods section.

What I really like about this recipe is that you can adapt it to fit other fillings. I would love to use it to make dessert ravioli.

Speaking of which, here's a new use for leftover candy bars. Sure, you could eat them “plain”, but it's always fun to try new things!

Chocolate Candy Dessert Ravioli
1 package wonton wrappers
Candy bars of your choice cut into 1/2” pieces
Canola oil for frying

All you have to do is lay the wonton wrappers out, put the candy on one half, fold the other half over and seal with a bit of water. Heat the canola oil in a wok or heavy pot and fry until golden brown. Lay on a paper towel to drain and dust with confectioner's sugar. Serve alone or with a scoop or two of ice cream and chocolate sauce.

The good thing about this one is that you can use whatever type of candy you want. It might be fun to feature a variety of candy bars in one batch; Snickers, Milky Way, Three Musketeers, caramel Kisses, etc.

Sorry-neither of these recipes are gluten-free.


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