Some days I rack my brain thinking up appetizers to bring to a party. Most days, though, they’re a result of an insane craving that’s been nagging at me and a party is the perfect excuse to whip it up and share.
This week’s craving started out with cheese…of course! But then it moved to fried (fill in the blank) and now I can’t stop thinking about some sort of fried cheese. And then my obsession with how Giada says ‘pasta’ hits me and I flash back to an episode of her making fried cheese ravioli and I’m hooked.
Here’s my step-by-step with a slight tweak to her recipe.
Gather up your cast iron pot, fresh raviolis & jarred marinara from the supermarket, olive oil, breadcrumbs, Italian seasoning, buttermilk and Parmesan cheese.
Fill your pot with olive oil to a depth of about 2 inches – you don’t need much; just enough to submerge. Keep the oil on hand in case you need to add more throughout cooking (which I did, because I made a double batch).
I don’t turn up the heat until I’ve coated each ravioli because I don’t want to risk the oil burning while I’m dunking this little beauties. But once your raviolis are coated, turn the oil up to a temp of 325° on a candy thermometer (or about medium heat).
Measure your breadcrumbs and dry Italian seasonings into a shallow dish (cake pans or pie pans work well).
I rub the added Italian seasonings to break them up and release a little extra flavor.
Pour buttermilk into a separate, matching shallow dish.
Ok, matching isn’t required, but it is cute.
Grab a handful of raviolis and dunk them into the buttermilk. Use a slotted spoon to raise them out of the buttermilk and allow the excess to drip off.
Drop them into the breadcrumb mixture and shake around, using an fork to ensure an even coat.
Pat them into the crumbs a couple of times, just to show ’em a little love.
The buttermilk will act as a glue – no eggs needed! Place each batch on a cookie rack until you’ve dusted them all with crumbs.
These beauties are now ready for the fryer.
Once your oil reaches 325°, use a Chinese strainer to slowly submerge raviolis in the hot oil.
Once they float up, use the strainer to flip them and then start rescuing them from the pool. This should only take 2-3 minutes.
Remove to paper towel lined plate to drain and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese while they are still warm.
Serve with store bought marinara sauce – 30 seconds in the microwave helps take off the ‘jarred’ flavor – then keep your family from eating them all before the party even starts!
And yes, even if you tell me not to bring anything, I will still show up with a plate full of something as I was raised never to visit a friend’s home empty handed. I was also raised under the understanding that the abundance of food I put out for guests is a showing of how welcome and loved they are and how honored I am to have you in my home, or that you’re having me in yours.
It the Cambodian in me. We’re not trying to impose or be rude, we just like to feed people!
So I will feed you well whether you’re at my house or I’m at yours. I promise.
Luckily for me, my gracious hostess this week made room on her table for these. Otherwise I would have sat them in my lap and eaten them all by myself, no doubt.
These fried raviolis will go fast so load your plate up because there might not be any left for seconds.
Pig out, peeps. I encourage it.
This message was brought to you by Phanneth for President (of fried food, or at least of cheese eating, anyway).
- 1 pkg store bought ravioli (any type)
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 2 cups Italian seasoned breadcrumbs
- 1 teaspoon dry Italian seasoning
- 1 jar marinara sauce, heated for dipping
- Olive oil, for frying
- Parmesan cheese, for topping (about ¼ cup)
- Pour olive oil into heavy bottom pot (cast iron works well) to a depth of about 2 inches. Heat up to 325 degrees over medium heat.
- Put breadcrumbs and Italian seasoning into a shallow dish, stir to combine, crushing the dry seasonings into the crumbs.
- Pour buttermilk into a seperate shallow dish.
- Working in batches, add ravioli to buttermilk then use a slotted spoon to remove and drain off excess buttermilk. Add to breadcrumbs and shake or press into breadcrumb mixture to enure an even coating. Place on wire rack until you've finished dunking and your oil comes up to temp.
- Using a Chinese strainer, add raviolis in batches to hot oil. Once they rise a bit, use the strainer to gently flip. Cook for 2-3 minutes, or until evenly golden browned.
- Remove to a paper towel lined plate to drain off excess oil and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese while still warm.
- Serve with a bowl of warmed marinara sauce for dipping.