Tortellini in brodo di cappone

The tortellini are the most famous stuffed pasta in the world; etymologically speaking, the name “tortellino” is the diminutive of “tortello”, which derives from the word “torta” (“cake”), meaning that the tortellini can be filled just like a small cake. The tortellini are considered a traditional Bolognese dish, but few people know that, still today, Bologna and Modena compete for being the native city, and the history of tortellini is bound to this rivalry.

Considering that the “perfect” filling for tortellini has always created confusion, in 1974 the “confraternity of tortellino” registered the original recipe for the tortellini filling, consisting of: pork loin, raw ham, mortadella, parmesan cheese, eggs and nutmeg. According to the original registered recipe, the dough for tortellini must be made only with flour and eggs, and each tortellino must be made from a piece of dough 1 ½ inches (4 cm) on a side.

  • For the tortellini
  • 400 g of Soft wheat flour
  • 5 Eggs
  • 70 g of Veal meat
  • 70 gof Pork top loin boneless chops
  • 80 g of Prosciutto di Parma
  • 80 g of Pork Bologna
  • 150 g of Hard parmesan cheese, grated
  • 20 g of Butter
  • 2 g of Ground nutmeg
  • 2 g of Table salt
  • 3 g of Black pepper
  • For the broth
  • 1,5 kg capon cut into pieces
  • 2 carrots
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 1 large onion
  • 1 well-grated parmesan crust (optional)
  • 3l of water
  • 2 black peppercorns
  • salt

To prepare the tortellini, first  melt the butter in a pan, then add the ground meat and cook for about 10 minutes or until there is no blood.
Meanwhile, roughly cut the mortadella and the raw ham, put them in a food processor along with the ground meat, and process until you have a fine-grained and blended mixture.
Transfer the  mixture to a bowl, add the parmesan cheese, the nutmeg and the egg if it need, then knead until all the ingredients are all blended .
Taste the mixture and add salt and pepper, if needed, since ham and parmesan may be salty enough.
Now take the fresh egg pasta dough and roll it out to a thickness of about 0,6 mm; with a pastry cutter, cut out squares, about 4 cm on a side.
Place a small amount of filling on each square; fold it into a triangle, pressing the edge to seal it (if the dough has dried out, brush the edge with a little water), then take the triangle and fold the base upwards; put it on your index finger, with the tip facing up; using the other hand, pinch the two ends together around your finger with a small pressure turning downwards slightly, making sure the edge adhere well.
Gently remove the tortellino from your finger and place on a lightly floured cloth; repeat until the ingredients are used up and your tortellini will be ready.
Keep the tortellini in a dry place over a tea towel with flour. and cook it in chicken broth or capon until they  float (very little)

(Capon Broth)

In a large saucepan combine all the ingredients and cover with water. Bring on low heat and cook for 3 hours, with the lid propped.
Turn off the heat, remove the meat and set aside (ideal to serve with a green sauce), strain the broth and let it cool. Discard the fat that will surface; then place in the refrigerator until ready to use.