These luscious ravioli combine the delicate flavors of lobster and shiitake mushrooms with the decadence of vanilla and white wine. Made with wonton wrappers instead of fresh pasta dough, they are as easy as they are delicious. And although they may seem like they are only meant for special occasions, you’ll want to enjoy them any day of the year.
Makes about 5 servings
For the lobster shitake filling:
3 small cooked lobsters, meat removed
3/4 lb shiitake mushrooms thinly sliced
4 teaspoons butter
2 shallots, chopped
½ cup crème fraîche
Salt and black pepper to taste
2 teaspoons chopped chives
1 package round wonton wrappers
For the vanilla butter sauce:
2 tablespoons butter plus 1 cup diced chilled butter
3 shallots, diced
1 cup dry white wine
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
Salt and pepper to taste
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
Prepare the filling:
Dice the lobster meat rather finely. Melt 4 teaspoons butter in a large saucepan. Sweat the shallots over medium heat until translucent. Add the mushrooms and cook over high heat until lightly browned, about 7 minutes. Mix in the crème fraiche, salt and pepper to taste, and allow the mixture to simmer for a few minutes or until slightly reduced. Stir in the cooked lobster meat and set aside.
Prepare the sauce:
Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a small saucepan. Add the shallots and cook on medium-high heat until the shallots are translucent. Add the white wine and scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean into the sauce and whisk until evenly distributed. Allow to simmer until the mixture reduces to about 3 tablespoons. Remove the sauce from the heat and add the vanilla extract and the remaining chilled butter, whisking until it is melted and the sauce thickens. Strain the sauce into a clean container, applying pressure to it so that the vanilla and shallots go through. Keep warm until service.
Prepare the ravioli:
Lay one wonton wrapper down flat. Place one tablespoon of the lobster and mushroom filling in the center, and brush the edges with water. Place another wrapper on top to cover, and seal with your fingers. Press down on all of the edges, being sure to get any air out from inside the ravioli.
[Chef’s Note: You may be tempted to overfill these ravioli, but when working with filled pasta or wonton wrappers (or even empanadas or turnovers, for that matter), it is best to use less filing than you think necessary, to avoid them splitting open when cooked. The key here is to squeeze any extra air out of the ravioli before sealing the edges.]
Bring a stockpot of salted water to a boil. When the water reaches a rolling boil, drop in the lobster ravioli and cook until they begin to float, about 4 minutes. Remove the cooked ravioli from the surface with a slotted spoon, carefully draining away any water pooled on the surface.
Place 3 ravioli on each plate, spoon a few teaspoons of the vanilla butter sauce over the ravioli, and garnish with finely chopped chives. Serve immediately.
Recipe by Sandra Di Capua
Photo by Mark Tafoya