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1. For the pasta : Put the flour on a board or in a bowl, sprinkle with the salt and make a well in the centre. 2. Add the eggs and gradually work them into the flow with your finger tips, until all the flow has been incorporated and the dough can be gathered into a ball. (Add a little water, if necessary, but the dough should not be sticky). 3. Kneed well for at least 5 minutes or until the dough is smooth and firm but elastic. Put it in a covered bowl or polythene bag and leave it to rest for about 30 minutes. 4. For the filling : If using fresh spinach, wash it and put it in a saucepan with only the water that is clinging to the leaves. 5. Cover tightly and cook gently for about 5 minutes or until tender. If using frozen spinach, cook it according to the packet instructions. Drain the spinach and, when cool enough to handle, squeeze out as much liquid as possible with your hands. 6. Chop the spinach finely if fresh and mix it with the sage, ricotta and salt. If the mixture seems too sticky, add a few breadcrumbs. 7. Put the pasta dough on a lightly floured surface and roll it out as thinly and evenly as possible into a large rectangle, or use a pasta machine if you have one. (If necessary divide the dough into pieces and make the ravioli in batches). 8. Put teaspoons of the spinach mixture in neat rows down the length of one half of the pasta rectangle. 9. Fold over the other half of the rectangle and press down gently between the mounds of filling to exclude any air pockets. 10. Trim the edges of the pasta, if necessary, then cut the dough crossways and lengthways between the rows of filling with a fluted pastry cutter or a sharp knife to make square ravioli. NOTES : This classic recipe comes from Emilia-Romagna. The ravioli are light and delicate, and should be eaten as soon as possible after cooking, with either a fresh tomato sauce or sage and butter sauce and a sprinkling of freshly grated parmesan.
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