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Pumpkin Tortelli

Pumpkin Tortelli

Take the time to make your own pasta, like this Italian Christmas specialty, pumpkin tortelli, brimming with gorgeous regional flavours.

Pumpkin Tortelli

Serves 15

1 pumpkin (around 2.5kg)

200g unsalted butter

1 large onion, peeled and cut into 1cm squares

2 cloves garlic, minced

15 apricot kernels

50g amaretti biscuits, crushed 

200g Grana Padano, grated

120g mustard fruit (apple, pear or quince), finely chopped

2 good pinches ground nutmeg

½ cup sage leaves

Egg Pasta Dough

1.2kg plain flour or 00 Italian

soft wheat pasta flour

12 eggs


Cut pumpkin into similar-sized pieces. Remove seeds and webbing but leave skin. Put pumpkin in a steamer and steam until cooked. Drain and leave to cool. Use a fork to scrape flesh off the skin so you can feel any woody pieces.

Scoop flesh off the skin and into a bowl, especially the green part near the skin. Put flesh, small amounts at a time, into a clean tea towel and squeeze out as much liquid as possible. You should be left with dry flesh the consistency of thick paste.

Heat 100g of butter in a pan. Fry onions until they begin to colour. Remove and strain off butter. Set aside to cool. Discard onions. Add cooled butter and garlic to pumpkin.

Place apricot kernels with a pinch of salt in a mortar, grind to a powder. Add to pumpkin with amaretti biscuits, 100g Grana Padano, mustard fruit and nutmeg. Season, then rest in fridge to harden a little.

To make pasta, form a “well” in flour. Crack eggs into well. Using fingers, mix until dough comes together. Add more flour if necessary. When dough comes together but is not smooth, roll through a pasta machine till 1.5mm thick.

Cut into 9cm squares. Place a teaspoon of stuffing in the centre of each square and roll from a corner (like a sweet wrapper). You may need to brush the opposite corner with an egg wash to seal if pasta is too dry. Place tortelli on a tray lined with a tea towel, ensuring they don’t touch each other. Cover, refrigerate until needed.

Cook tortelli in rapidly boiling, salted water. Remove when cooked with a flat sieve. Sprinkle remaining Grana Padano on top. Heat remaining butter in a saucepan till nut-brown. Add sage, fry till crisp. Spoon butter and sage over tortelli and serve immediately.

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One Comment on Pumpkin Tortelli

  • Elizabeth
    December 13, 2013 7:34 am

    Does anyone know where you can by apricot kernels?

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