Malfatti (Ricotta and Swiss Chard Dumplings)
Chef Anna Klinger of Al Di Là in Brooklyn, New York, flavors these dumplings with nutmeg. For the best results, drain the ricotta overnight and squeeze all the moisture out of the Swiss chard.
Yield: serves 4-6
- 1 lb. ricotta
- 1 tsp. kosher salt, plus more to taste
- 4 bunches Swiss chard (about 4 lbs.), stemmed
- 16 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
- 1⁄4 cup flour, plus more
- 1⁄2 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
- 4 egg yolks
- 1 egg
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 24 sage leaves
- Freshly grated Parmesan cheese, for serving
- Put ricotta in a cheesecloth-lined strainer set over a bowl and let drain overnight in refrigerator. Measure 1 1⁄4 cups drained ricotta and reserve any remaining ricotta for another use.
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add chard; cook until soft, 3-4 minutes. Drain chard and let cool. Squeeze chard with your hands to expel liquid. Transfer chard to center of a tea towel, bring up edges, and squeeze to expel remaining liquid. (Alternatively, working in batches, put chard in a potato ricer and squeeze to expel liquid.) Transfer chard to a food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Transfer chard to a large bowl along with drained ricotta, 1 tsp. salt, 8 tbsp. butter, flour, nutmeg, egg yolks, and egg. Season with pepper and mix until smooth. (Test 1 dumpling: Bring a small pot of water to a boil. Measure out 1 tbsp. of mixture, roll in flour, and boil until the dumpling floats. If dumpling falls apart, stir 1⁄4 cup more flour into mixture.)
- Using a spoon, divide mixture into about 40 portions. Working with 1 portion at a time, use 2 spoons to shape portion into an oval and dust with flour. Transfer dumplings to a lightly floured baking sheet and repeat with remaining portions. (If not cooking immediately, cover and freeze malfatti for up to 6 months.)
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add dumplings; cook until dumplings float, 1-2 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer dumplings to a baking sheet. Meanwhile, heat remaining butter in a 10" skillet over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Add sage and cook until leaves are crisp, 1 minute. Divide dumplings between 6 serving plates, drizzle with sage butter, and garnish with more Parmesan and nutmeg, if you like.