Continuing on with my valiant effort to use up all my fresh herbs while summer is still summer, I bring you one of my most favorite, easiest, most crowd-pleasing dishes ever. There is something a dish with the words “browned butter” in the title that just makes you feel warm and fuzzy all over. Well, it works for me, anyway. Browned butter is exactly what it sounds like: butter that has been melted and simmered over low heat until it starts to turn slightly, well, brown. And with that browning it takes on a bit of a nutty taste that is rich and wonderful.
So this sauce calls not only for fabulous brown butter, but also for a generous amount of this:
That would be the acres and acres of sage in my back yard. Okay, it is only a wooden barrel-ful of sage, but this stuff is tenacious, and it needs to be dealt with. And one of the most satisfying ways is with this scrumptious recipe. Start by boiling up your favorite ravioli – I like the nice big round cheese kind. While the ravioli is cooking, you melt some butter in your favorite skillet and add some chopped shallots, stirring them around until they soften. Then toss in those fresh sage leaves and cook them until they just start getting crispy. All of this is going to take about 5 minutes, and by now the butter will be getting just a little brown. Add a little salt and pepper and pour the whole thing over your cooked ravioli. Last but not least toss very gently with some grated Parmesan cheese, and there you are! The entire process took you about 15 minutes, and you are in ravioli heaven.
More herb-using strategies to come in the next post.