"This pasta dish is inspired by Middle Eastern cuisine - I love the combination of flavours that they have with sumac, mint, yoghurt and spit-roasted lamb," says Alessandro Pavoni. "I thought it could work using these flavours in a filled pasta dish and it does. Our food at Ormeggio is a modern interpretation of traditional Italian cuisine, in this case agnolotti, originally from Piedmont, is the traditional part of the dish. We spit-roast the lamb at Ormeggio, but here we've roasted it in the oven." Begin this recipe a day ahead to roast the lamb and strain the herb oil.
- 150 gm finely grated parmesan
- 75 gm butter, softened
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 8 anchovy fillets, finely chopped
- 10 sage leaves, finely chopped
- 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra to coat
- 1½ tbsp lemon juice
- To serve: goat’s milk yoghurt, sumac and parsley cress
- 1 cup (firmly packed) flat-leaf parsley
- ¾ cup (firmly packed) mint
- 60 ml (¼ cup) olive oil
- 100 ml grapeseed oil
- 3 celery stalks, chopped
- 1 each large carrot and onion, chopped
- 750 ml dry red wine
- 1 litre (4 cups) chicken stock
- ½ cup (loosely packed) flat-leaf parsley, coarsely chopped
- 1/3 cup (loosely packed) rosemary, coarsely chopped
- 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
- 1 lamb shoulder (1.5kg), bone in (Pavoni uses oyster-cut lamb shoulder)
- 400 gm (2 cups) “00” flour
- 200 gm fine semolina flour, plus extra for dusting
- 8 egg yolks
- 3 eggs
- 1For herb oil, process ingredients in a blender until well combined, pour into a sieve lined with muslin placed over a bowl and stand overnight to strain.
- 2For roast lamb, heat a barbecue or char-grill pan over high heat and an oven to 90C (see note). Heat 80ml grapeseed oil in a flameproof roasting pan over low-medium heat and fry vegetables until golden-brown (30 minutes). Deglaze pan with wine, add stock, increase heat to high and reduce liquid by half (20-25 minutes). Combine herbs, garlic and 2 tsp fine sea salt and rub into lamb, drizzle with remaining oil and barbecue or grill, turning occasionally, until golden-brown (6-8 minutes). Transfer to roasting pan, spoon juices over, cover and roast in oven, basting occasionally, until meat is falling from the bone (10 hours). Set aside to cool (2 hours), then shred meat and coarsely chop (discard bones, skin and fat), place in a bowl and refrigerate.
- 3Skim fat from pan juices, strain, then reduce to about 100ml in a large frying pan over high heat, stirring often towards the end of cooking (20-25 minutes). Cool briefly, then stir into lamb.
- 4For pasta dough, combine flour, semolina and a pinch of salt in a bowl. Lightly beat eggs and egg yolks, gradually add to flour, mixing until small balls of dough form, then turn out onto
a bench and knead until smooth. Pat into a disc, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate to rest (30-40 minutes).
- 5Meanwhile, combine parmesan, butter, eggs, anchovies, sage, extra-virgin olive oil and lemon juice, mix into lamb and refrigerate until required.
- 6Bring dough to room temperature and divide into 8 pieces. Working with a piece at a time, flatten then roll through a pasta machine, fold in half then roll again until smooth. Continue folding and rolling, reducing settings notch by notch, until you have a 10cm wide, 1mm-thick strip, then halve strip lengthways. With a long edge closest to you, spoon 2 tsp filling 4cm in from the edge, then continue along the strip 4cm-5cm apart. Run a wet finger along the edge closest to you and between fillings, then fold edge over and press to seal around filling. Moisten between fillings again, then fold over top edge to overhang slightly and press between fillings, but not along length, so you have an open flap. Repeat with other half of pasta strip. Cut to separate agnolotti, then squeeze filling gently to plump. Press sides to seal, bending them forward as you do, then trim sides and flap with a crinkle pasta wheel, and set aside on a tray dusted with semolina while you prepare the rest.
- 7Cook agnolotti in a large saucepan of boiling salted water until al dente and cooked through (3-4 minutes). Transfer to a bowl with a splash of extra-virgin olive oil and toss to combine.
- 8To serve, spoon yoghurt onto plates, top with agnolotti, dot with herb oil and scatter with parsley cress and sumac.
Note If you prefer to spit-roast the lamb, cook it on a rôtisserie over a coal or wood barbecue on low heat, basting occasionally with butter, for 1 hour 45 minutes, increase heat to medium and baste occasionally for 45 minutes, then cook without basting for a further 15 minutes. Turn off the heat and rest for 30 minutes.
Drink Suggestion: 2012 Collemattoni Rosso di Montalcino DOC Sangiovese, from Tuscany, is the pick of Ormeggio sommelier, Jeremy Croft.