We’re just stepping into the middle of sweet corn season. Those beautiful fields that started as seedlings are now well above head height. That prized summer bounty is fully ripe, sprouting “silk” from under the protective husks. It really is a lovely sight to see.
This vision along New England farms means we’re getting closer to the end of the summer. Eventually, the remaining stalks will end up in our fall decorations.
But, for the time being, this sight also means restaurants will incorporate these delightful little golden niblets into their seasonal specials.
One of those specials that usually has me trekking around the city in search is sweet corn agnolotti. I become obsessed and want to try all of the different versions. I’m drooling just writing about it – the delicate fresh pasta hugs those little yellow gems suspended in a silky, cheesy center. Sometimes there’s a little prosciutto dolloped on top of the dish; other times chef uses lumps of fresh crab meat that are just as sweet as the corn centerpiece.
But I haven’t seen this dreamy dish anywhere (at least not yet). And, when I crave something, I need to satisfy it.
So, why not just make it myself? It can’t be that hard- can it?
As it turns out, making fresh sweet corn agnolotti is pretty gosh darn hard. (Trust me, my expletives were much harsher during the actual process.) Perhaps it would have been easier if I didn’t have boys running in and out of the house and through the kitchen during each passing thunderstorm, yelling and tracking mud all over the place, throwing off my rhythm.
I’m sure it would have been much easier if it was just me, my glass of rose, and Pandora playing in the background. But, then again, the best of best Italian meals are created in a lively kitchen with boisterous family life bursting out of every corner.
Hey, at least by the time I was done, all the kiddos were tucked into bed, and the adults could enjoy this labor of love with a lovely bottle of Rose In The Air.
Corn Agnolotti Recipe
This recipe made roughly four servings and took me four hours. I’m pretty sure it can be done in less than half that time.
It’s a good idea to prepare the dough first, this way, you can put it into the refrigerator and let it set. This is also more dough than you’ll need, but it can be tricky, so it’s better to have a little extra. 😉 Besides, I also ate a good amount of filling through the process. (Hangs head in shame.) But, if you nail it on the first time, and have extra filling, go ahead, make and freeze them.
- 2 Cups of flour
- 6 Egg yolks
- 2 Large eggs
- 1 Tablespoon of milk
- 1 1/2 Teaspoons olive oil
- If you’re using a mixer, remove the bowl and put in the flour.
- Create a little “hole” in the middle.
- Put the egg yolks, 2 eggs, milk, and olive oil into that hole.
- Using your fingers or a fork, mix the items within that flour hole.
- Slowly start to incorporate the flour from the sides of the hole.
- Once it’s starting to form a dough, you can let the electric mixer do the rest of the work.
- Remove the ball of dough, wrap, and put into the refrigerator for later.
Next, I made the filling so that it could cool down a little bit before going into the pasta. You’ll need another ear of corn for the sauce, so you might as well boil them both at the same time.
- 1 Ear of corn (consider boiling the 2nd ear for the sauce at the same time.)
- 1/2 Cup mascarpone cheese
- 1 Cup ricotta cheese
- 1/2 Cup of cream
- 3 Sage leaves
- 2 Tablespoons truffle oil
Ingredients for Corn Agnolotti Recipe
- Boil two ears of corn for about 12 minutes. Set one aside for sauce.
- While the corn is boiling, in a bowl, mix the ricotta, mascarpone, and parmesan.
- In a small pan, saute finely chopped sage in truffle oil.
- Shave the kernels off of corn and add to pan.
- Add cream and cook until the cream is mostly evaporated.
- Add the corn mixture to the cheese and stir well. Cover and set aside.
Sauce & Toppings
I used Alaskan King Crab, but you can use any crab meat you want. You can also use prosciutto or pancetta instead of bacon, but I would recommend making it nice and crispy! For all you vegetarians out there, don’t fret, you can do without the bacon and crab. Sorry, I can’t help with the dairy. 😉
- Kernels from 1 boiled corn
- 4 Tablespoons of black truffle oil
- 1 cup of chicken broth
- 1 cup of cream
- Few dashes of garlic powder
- Salt and pepper
- 1 Pound fresh crab meat
- 6 pieces of cooked bacon, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup of microgreens for garnish
- In a pan, saute the corn kernels in the truffle oil with a little bit of salt and pepper and garlic powder. I like them to get a bit candied to bring out that summer sweetness. So, that’s about 6 minutes on medium to high heat, stirring every now and then.
- Lower the heat to medium and add chicken stock to deglaze the pan.
- Add cream and lower the heat a little bit. Cover, but stir occasionally.
- This probably isn’t necessary, but I wanted a creamier sauce. So I blended everything together and then put back into the pan on warm.
Putting It All Together!
At this point, you should have your ball of dough, filling, sauce, and toppings. Now, it’s time to put it all together! I learned you need to work pretty quickly once the dough is out of the press; otherwise, it dries up quickly. There are also so many different ways to form the pasta- by hand, twisting, or with a pasta roller. The good news is I think they all pretty much end up tasting the same.
- Remove dough from the freezer.
- Flour your workspace. (I used fine cornmeal.)
- Cut into smaller pieces and either handroll or put through the pasta press until that point when it is just thin enough that it won’t break. We’re looking for long rectangular pieces.
- Put the stretched pieces on your counter workspace.
- Start to boil a pot of well-salted water.
- Using a teaspoon, start to plop the filling down along one edge of the pasta.
- Wet your fingers in water and fold the edges, making sure they are sealed.
- Use a knife to section and create the individual agnolotti.
- Very carefully, using a slotted spoon, put into boiling water and cook for about 3 minutes. I worked in batches.
- Top with sauce, bacon, fresh crab meat, and sprinkles of microgreens.
- Sit back and enjoy with someone you love. 🙂
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