When dr bob was a kid, ravioli came in a big tall can with tomato sauce. It was called Chef Boyardee, almost synonymous with ravioli for us, and it was filled with beef and cheese. In the 1950s, there was no widespread highbrow notion of "pasta", although we dr bob siblings did not stoop to the level of "spaghettiOs" (ring spaghetti in a can, more tomato sauce). Fortunately bob's life intersected Italy along the way and he learned what real ravioli were and the delicious ways in which it could be served. And the American market grew up to offer relatively high quality ravioli with interesting fillings in ordinary supermarkets. This time it was a new healthy market store Mom's in Bryn Mawr where our legendary Borders Books and Records used to be once upon a time which supplied us with a two person portion size: 8 oz of garlic gorzonzola filled spinach ravioli.
Often we just do a simple sage butter sauce to serve already prepared ravioli, but this time Ani was inspired and she kicked it up a notch while still keeping it simple. A little mascarpone and pasta water for the base, seasoned with sauteed chopped shallots and a hit of hot red pepper flakes, and topped off with toasted pine nuts, freshly chopped parsley, and of course freshly grated parmigiano. The mascarpone idea came from GiadaAni often has a small container in the fridge to combine a bit with a pasta sauce.
This turned out really well, unexpectedly for bob who already had started chowing down before it occurred to him that a photo was called for. This turns out to be really photogenic as well.