About 15 years ago I tried a recipe for pan-fried ravioli that was such a disappointment that I swore that I would, from then on, stay clear of it. And so was the case until I saw a recent recipe for it in Cooking Light. The attraction? The ravioli was first dipped in an egg and water mixture (so that the next layer would have something to adhere to) and then dipped into a panko-Parmesan mixture which would help the ravioli create a crisp, flavorful crust without deep frying. (Not that deep fried ravioli isn’t delicious – but I’m leaving that to restaurant kitchens).
Panko is a dried, flaky bread crumb used extensively in Japanese cooking that has also risen in popularity here. It makes for a wonderfully crisp crust. It is found in the Asian section of most supermarkets.
There’s really only one key to success: You will need to cook the ravioli in 2 batches. Make sure, after the first batch, you take a wadded up paper towel and wipe the pan free of any (browned) panko-Parmesan crumbs. Otherwise they will continue to cook and burn and ruin your next batch. So wipe clean and then add more olive oil before you pan fry the final batch. Wipe out the pan once again before you start cooking the tomato topping.
Also, the recipe calls for making a quick tomato sauce by sauteing grape tomatoes in the same pan used to cook the ravioli once they have been removed. If grape tomatoes are pricey or aren’t available, you can also use a can of diced tomatoes, preferably one that is seasoned with onions and/or basil. Simply drain the liquid from the can and then heat up the contents in the pan for a few minutes. Once hot, spoon over the ravioli.
Pan Fried Ravioli (adapted from Cooking Light, September 2010)
- 2 Tbsp. water
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- 1 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
- 1/4 cup (1 ounce) grated fresh Parmesan cheese
- 1 (9 – ounce) package fresh ravioli*
- 3 Tbsp. olive oil, divided
- 4 cups grape tomatoes, halved (about 2 pints)
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp. freshly grated black pepper
- 3 garlic cloves coarsely chopped
- Combine 2 Tbsp. water and egg in a shallow dish, stirring well. Combine panko and cheese in another shallow dish, stirring well with a fork. Dip each ravioli in egg mixture, dredge in panko mixture so that it adheres to both sides of the ravioli (you may need to ‘pat’ it on).
- Spray a large skillet with non-stick cooking spray. Add 1 1/2 Tbsp. oil and heat on medium-high. When the pan is hot and the oil shimmers, add half of ravioli to pan in a single layer; saute 1 minute on each side or until golden. Remove ravioli from pan using slotted spoon and drain on paper towel. Using a wadded up paper towel, wipe skillet clean before continuing. Repeat procedure with remaining ravioli and 1 1/2 Tbsp. oil. When the second batch is golden, remove from skillet and wipe skillet clean with paper towels.
- Add tomatoes, salt and pepper to pan; saute 2 minutes stirring frequently. Add garlic to pan and saute 30 seconds more, stirring constantly. Divide ravioli among 4 plates and top each with the tomatoes. Serve and enjoy!
*Any flavor of fresh ravioli will work well. I purchase ravioli stuffed with wild mushrooms.
Have friends that are purse-crazy? Diva Entertains has a large selection of Purse Favors; just Click Here and scroll down (right past the shoe favors!).