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Sausage and Ricotta Cappellacci with Fresh Tomato Cream Sauce

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Crafted with care, these Sausage and Ricotta Cappellacci are filled with a savory blend of hot Italian sausage and creamy ricotta cheese, topped with a luscious homemade tomato cream sauce. These tender pasta parcels are similar to ravioli or tortellini and are quite popular in Italian cuisine.

This recipe will yield approximately 20-24 medium-to-large sized cappellacci. Consider a serving size of three to four of these delicious sausage cappellacci, per person.

A white plate of three ricotta and cheese cappellacci coated with homemade tomato cream sauce and garnished with freshly grated Parmesan cheese and fresh basil leaves.
Plate the cappellacci. Spoon on the homemade tomato cream sauce and garnish with freshly grated Parmesan cheese and fresh basil leaves.

What is Cappellacci?

Cappellacci is a type of filled pasta originating from Italy. The name “cappellacci” translates to “little hats” in Italian, which refers to the shape of the pasta. Cappellacci are typically large, square or rectangular pieces of pasta dough that are filled with various savory ingredients, folded, and sealed to resemble a hat or pouch.

The filling for cappellacci can vary widely, but common fillings include combinations of meats, cheeses, vegetables and herbs. Once filled, the pasta is boiled to al dente. This traditional Italian dish is typically served with a sauce, such as a tomato sauce, cream sauce or butter and sage.

Twelve filled and formed cappellacci sitting on a floured, white counter.

What You Need to Make this Cappellacci Recipe

Having the right tools on hand to make this incredible Italian pasta dish is essential. Here is a list of items you will need:

Why You Should Make this Homemade Pasta Dish

  • Authentic Italian Flavors: Experience the authentic taste of Italy with every bite of these handcrafted cappellacci, bursting with rich Italian sausage, creamy ricotta and fragrant basil.
  • Homemade Pasta: Master the art of homemade pasta making with these simple-to-follow instructions.
  • Customizable Fillings: Get creative with your fillings! Experiment with different sausage varieties, cheese blends or vegetarian options to suit your taste preferences.
  • Family-Friendly Fun: Involve the whole family in the pasta-making process for a fun and interactive cooking experience that everyone will enjoy.
  • Impressive Presentation: Impress everyone at the dinner tables with these beautifully shaped cappellacci, that look as good as they taste.

Ingredients to Make Sausage and Ricotta Cappellacci

These cappellacci were made using a rich egg pasta dough, feel free to use your favorite homemade pasta dough recipe instead:

  • Hot Italian Sausage Links: Can easily substitute with mild, or sweet sausage. Ground sausage can also be used. Leave out to create vegetarian cappellacci.
  • Ricotta Cheese: Substitute with cottage cheese or mascarpone cheese, for a different texture and flavor profile.
  • Parmesan Cheese: Pecorino Romano can be used as alternative.
  • Fresh Basil Leaves: Dried basil can be used in place of fresh, but adjust quantity to taste.
  • 00 Flour: All-purpose flour can be substituted, but the texture may vary slightly.
  • Campari Tomatoes: Vine-ripened tomatoes, fresh plum tomatoes or canned San Marzano tomatoes are suitable replacements.
  • Heavy Cream: Easily omit, or substitute with half-and-half or whole milk, for a lighter option.
  • Eggs: No direct substitution given this is a rich egg pasta dough recipe.

How to Make Homemade Cappellacci

Honestly, as hard to make as this handcrafted pasta recipe may appear, it’s actually more time consuming, than difficult . By following these simple steps, you can have this fresh, homemade pasta dish on your dinner table in just over an hour.

Prepare the Sausage and Ricotta Filling:

  • Brown the sausage in a pan, breaking it up into pieces. Drain excess grease and let it cool slightly.
  • In a food processor, combine cooked sausage, ricotta cheese, Parmesan cheese, salt, pepper, nutmeg, basil leaves and egg. Pulse until creamy.
  • Transfer the mixture to a pastry bag and chill in the fridge.

Prepare the Homemade Pasta Dough:

  • Place the flour on the counter and make a well.
  • Add in the whole eggs and egg yolks.
  • Using a fork, slowly mix the eggs, gradually incorporating the flour.
  • Once combined, knead the dough for 8-10 minutes until it forms a soft ball.
  • Cover. Let the pasta dough rest for at least 20 minutes.

Make the Homemade Tomato Sauce:

  • Blanch the Campari tomatoes in salted boiling water for 2 minutes to release the skin. Peel and crush them.
  • Heat olive oil in a saucepan. Add garlic and cook for 2 minutes.
  • Pour in crushed tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper. Add torn basil leaves.
  • Let the sauce simmer while you prepare the cappellacci.

Shape and Fill the Cappellacci:

  • Sprinkle flour on counter.
  • Divide the dough in half.
  • Using a pasta machine or rolling pin, roll out one piece of pasta dough into a thin sheet.
  • Cut the dough into large squares (approximately 3″x3″ or 4″x4″).
  • Pipe the filling into the center of each.
  • Use a pastry cutter to trim the edges.
  • Moisten the inside edges with water.
  • Fold the square into a triangle. Seal the edges.
  • Invert. Create an indent in the middle of the filled pocket.
  • Bring the ends together to form a criss-cross.
  • Place on a floured baking surface.

Cook the Cappellacci and Finish the Sauce:

  • Boil a pot of water. Salt and add the cappellacci in batches.
  • Add a ladle full of the starchy pasta water to the sauce, along with the heavy cream.
  • Once the cappellacci float to the top, cook for an additional 3-4 minutes to al dente.
  • Remove with a slotted spoon and transfer to a platter or individual bowls.
  • Spoon the sauce over the cappellacci.
  • Garnish with freshly grated Parmesan cheese and fresh basil.

How to Serve and Store this Homemade Italian Pasta Dish

Serving Suggestions:

  • Serve the Sausage and Ricotta Cappellacci as a main course.
  • Pair with a crisp green salad and crusty garlic bread for a complete and satisfying meal.

Storage and Reheating Tips:

  • Store any leftover cappellacci in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • To freeze, arrange the filled cappellacci in a single layer on a baking sheet and freeze until solid. Transfer to a freezer bag or container and store for up to 3 months.
  • Reheat the cappellacci by gently simmering in a pot of simmering water for 3-4 minutes, or until heated through. Alternatively, microwave on low power in 30-second intervals until warmed.
  • Serve with a fresh batch of your favorite sauce.

More Stuffed Pasta Recipes to Love

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Showing the inside of a cooked ricotta and sausage filled cappellacci.

Sausage and Ricotta Cappellacci with Fresh Tomato Cream Sauce


Description

Crafted with care, these Sausage and Ricotta Cappellacci are filled with a savory blend of hot Italian sausage and creamy ricotta cheese topped with a luscious homemade tomato cream sauce. These tender pasta parcels are similar to ravioli or tortellini and are popular in Italian cuisine.


Ingredients

Scale

For the Rich Egg Pasta:

  • 260 grams 00 flour
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 3 egg yolks
  • Additional flour or semolina flour for dusting

For the Filling:

  • 1 pound hot sausage links, casings removed
  • 16-ounces ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 8 fresh basil leaves
  • 1 egg

For the Homemade Tomato Cream Sauce:

  • 2 pounds Campari tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 6 torn fresh basil leaves
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • ladle of starchy pasta water

Instructions

  1. Prepare the Filling:

    • Brown the sausage in a pan, breaking it up into pieces. Drain excess grease and let it cool slightly.
    • In a food processor, combine the sausage, ricotta cheese, Parmesan cheese, salt, pepper, nutmeg, basil leaves and egg. Pulse until creamy.
    • Transfer the mixture to a pastry bag and chill in the fridge.
  2. Make the Rich Egg Pasta Dough:

    • Place the flour on the counter and make a well.
    • Add in the whole eggs and egg yolks.
    • Using a fork, slowly mix the eggs, gradually incorporating the flour.
    • Once combined, knead the dough for 8-10 minutes until it forms a soft ball.
    • Cover and let it rest for at least 20 minutes.
  3. Prepare the Homemade Tomato Sauce:

    • Blanch the tomatoes in boiling, salted water for 2 minutes to release the skin. Peel and crush the tomatoes.
    • Heat olive oil in a saucepan. Add the garlic cloves and cook for 2 minutes, ensuring you do not brown or burn the garlic.
    • Pour in the crushed tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper. Add the torn basil leaves.
    • Let the sauce simmer while you prepare the cappellacci.
  4. Shape and Fill the Cappellacci:

    • Sprinkle flour on a flat surface.
    • Divide the pasta dough into halves and roll out one piece thinly using a pasta machine or rolling pin.
    • Cut the dough into large squares (about 3″x3″ or 4″x4″).
    • Trim the edges using a pasta cutter.
    • Pipe the filling into the center of each square. 
    • Moisten the inside edges of the pasta dough with water.
    • Fold the square into a triangle. Press the dough around the filling to create a seal. 
    • Firmly seal the edges. 
    • Invert the filled pasta triangle and make an indent in the middle with your finger.
    • Wet one end with water and bring the ends together to form a criss-cross. 
    • Press to seal tightly.
    • Place filled cappellacci on a floured surface or baking sheet.
    • Finish filling the remaining until you run out of dough or filling.
  5. Cook the Cappellacci and Finish the Tomato Cream Sauce:

    • Boil a pot of water. Salt the water then add the cappellacci in batches.
    • Add a ladle full of the starchy pasta water, along with the heavy cream, to finish the sauce.
    • Once the pasta floats to the top, cook for an additional 3-4 minutes for al dente.
    • Remove with a slotted spoon and transfer to a platter or into individual bowls.
  6. Finish with Sauce and Garnishes:

    • Spoon the tomato cream sauce over the cooked cappellacci.
    • Garnish with freshly grated Parmesan cheese and fresh basil leaves.
@charlottefashionplate

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Notes

  • If you do not prefer a rich egg pasta dough, use your favorite pasta dough recipe instead.
  • Substitute the homemade pasta sauce with your own sauce, or a jarred marinara. 
  • Easily substitute the hot sausage with mild or sweet sausage.
  • Leave out the sausage for a vegetarian pasta dish.
  • Ground sausage can be used instead. I, personally think link sausage has more flavor (Do not forget to remove the sausage from the casings).
  • Add fresh spinach to the filling. 
  • For a fresher tomato sauce, or for preference, omit the heavy cream. 
  • Prepare the filling in advance to allow flavors to meld together.
  • Chill the filling in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes for easier handling.
  • Use a pasta machine for uniform thickness and as a time-saver.
  • Keep the pasta dough covered with a clean kitchen towel or plastic wrap to prevent drying out.
  • Avoid overfilling the cappellacci to prevent bursting during cooking.
  • Seal the edges of the pasta dough tightly using a little water.
  • Trim any excess dough for neat, uniform shapes.
  • Use a decorative pastry cutter for trimming.
  • Season the boiling water generously with salt before adding the cappellacci.
  • Cook the cappellacci in batches to prevent overcrowding and ensure even, al dente texture.
  • Serve the cooked cappellacci immediately with your preferred sauce and garnishes.
  • Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat gently before serving.
  • Prep Time: 40 minutes
  • Filling and Forming: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Category: Dinner, Pasta
  • Method: Moderate
  • Cuisine: American, Italian

Keywords: Homemade pasta, Italian cuisine, Pasta recipe, Sausage cappellacci, Ricotta-filled pasta, Italian sausage, Homemade tomato sauce, Fresh basil, Parmesan cheese, Pasta making, Cooking from scratch, Italian flavors, Gourmet pasta dish, Handmade pasta, Family-friendly recipe, Comfort food, Cooking at home, Delicious dinner, Pasta filling, Cooking with sausage, Ricotta cheese filling, Traditional Italian dish, Easy pasta recipe, Homemade sauce, Pasta shapes, Culinary delight, Dinner party recipe, Italian cooking, Fresh ingredients, Pasta dough, Creamy filling, Pasta pockets, Sausage and cheese, Italian comfort food, Flavorful dinner, Pasta shapes, Authentic recipe, Quick and easy meal, Homemade pasta pockets, Gourmet cooking, Italian cuisine at home, Pasta making techniques, Sausage filling, Ricotta cheese blend, Cooking with fresh herbs, Tomato basil sauce, Italian pasta dishes, Handcrafted pasta, Rustic cooking, Homemade Italian cuisine, Pasta mastery, Pasta craftsmanship, Dinner inspiration, Family dinner idea, Weeknight meal, Pasta shapes and fillings, Traditional cooking method, Italian food lovers, Pasta lovers’ delight, Homemade gourmet meal, Sausage and Ricotta Cappellacci

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WELCOME! My name is Melissa Latin aka. Charlotte Fashion Plate. Happy to meet you! I am more than just recipes. I love fashion and style too! Most importantly, I love my Family (my Hubby and my Fur Babies). My Husband (aka my “Kitchen Bitch”) means the world to me. He’s pretty damn cool too. Not only is he one of the nicest guys you will ever meet, he also has had a lengthy career in professional hockey. Not only winning two Stanley Cups with the Pittsburgh Penguins in the early ’90’s, but most recently winning the Calder Cup with the Charlotte Checkers, amongst many other accolades. If you live in Charlotte and play hockey, or have a family member who plays, be sure to contact him!

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