Chef Alida Solomon opened her celebrated Toronto restaurant Tutti Matti in 2002. She has been hailed by critics and received both local and national awards, including the prestigious 2009 L’Eccio D’Oro for Osteria of the Year and being named a Fellow of the Institute at the 2016 Ontario Hostelry Institute’s Gold Awards.
Alida lived and worked in Montalcino, Tuscany, for six years, and was highly respected in the regional hospitality industry where she garnered acclaim for the hilltop restaurant Boccon di Vino, for which she earned Michelin recognition.
"This is one of Tuscany’s oldest recipes which is dear to my heart. It comes from the filling of tortelli. When they would run out of pasta, they would roll the filling of spinach and ricotta in flour and place it in a wine cup to give it shape. Like Tuscany, we are so lucky in Ontario to have amazing cheese production."
In a medium saucepan, saut. spinach with 1 tbsp butter. Strain, chop and set aside to cool.
Once cool, squeeze out the remaining liquid with your hands, forming little balls.
Fill a large pot with salted water and bring to a boil.
In a mixing bowl, mix spinach, ricotta, egg, ground nutmeg, lemon zest and 1/3 cup of the flour. Mix until all ingredients are thoroughly combined.
Flour your hands and make 2 cm balls. Place them on a floured baking sheet.
In a frying pan, warm the butter on a low heat with the sage leaves and a pinch of sea salt.
Gently place the balls in the boiling water and, when they come to the surface, remove and place in warm butter with a little of the retained pasta water.
Serve warm and smile.