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Research and experience support the fact that getting the kiddos involved in the preparation of their food is one of the easiest ways to help them create a wonderful relationship with food and get them to eat foods they might not otherwise try.  Their curiosity grows when they get to touch and feel food.  The memories you and your family create in the kitchen are priceless.  Kids take so much pride in seeing their creation from start to finish and the look on their faces during meal time is pure love knowing they played a part in the preparation and cooking.

Homemade ravioli filled with Yummy Spoonfuls Butternut Squash will have the kids helping and learning at the same time from kneading, counting, creating shapes, using fractions, measuring etc.. Let the fun begin. Remember you can never over-kneed the dough so let the kiddos go to town.

Butternut squash is a tasty, nutritious seasonal vegetable — full of Vitamin A and an excellent source of fiber.

ingredients for ravioli dough:

  • 3 cups unbleached, umbromated all-purpose flour
  • ½ warm cup water
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ tsp salt

Place the flour on a dry clean work surface, forming a mound. Let the kiddo create a well 4 to 5 inches wide with at least half an inch of flour on the bottom of the well.

Drop eggs, salt and oil into the flour well. Using your
hand or a fork gently break the yolks and beat eggs slightly.

Combine the eggs and flour together, gradually adding enough warm water to make a stiff dough.

Knead dough well, until smooth. It’s easy to not knead pasta enough but virtually impossible to knead too much so have fun. Form the dough into a ball, cover with cloth and let it rest for 20 minutes.

Cut dough in half and roll each half of the dough out on a floured board into a very thin sheet (about 1/16 to 1/8 inch thick).

Cut into squares (you can also use a ravioli mold if you have it). I use a square cookie cutter and a fork to press down the edges. You can make any shape you want and a sharp knife or a zig zag pastry cutter will do just fine as well.

ingredients for ravioli filling:

filling the ravioli:

  • Drop about 1 tsp of filling on your squares. Be careful not to overfill.
  • When your squares are fully dotted with dabs of filling mixture, cover with top dough square.
  • Using your fork, gently press dough squares around all corners to seal it.
  • Allow ravioli to dry for one hour before cooking (you can also freeze for later).

cooking the ravioli:

  • Drop ravioli into pot of boiling, salted water and cook for about 5-6 minutes or until it floats.
  • Remove cooked ravioli from pot carefully with a skimmer or a large slotted spoon and drain well.
  • Place drained ravioli on a serving platter with your favorite sauce and a sprinkling of grated cheese.

Serve hot.

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