November 2023

Roasted Sweet Potato Bisque With Ham + Leek Ravioli

serves 4


4 large sweet potatoes
6 tbsp butter
1 leek, sliced (white part only)
3 quarts chicken stock
1 sprig thyme
1 stem parsley
1 bay leaf
1 tsp black peppercorns
salt and freshly ground black pepper
ham + leek ravioli
2 tsp chopped chives

For the chicken stock (yield, 2-3 quarts)

6 lbs chicken bones
3 cups chopped onions
2 cups chopped carrots
2 cups chopped celery
1 cup chopped leeks
1 tbsp white peppercorns
1 bay leaf

For the ham + leek ravioli (yield, 12 ravioli)
1 leek, thinly sliced (white part only)
1 tbsp butter
1/2 tbsp heavy whipping cream
2 ounces ham, preferably Smithfield, finely diced
freshly ground black pepper
24 2 1/2 inch round wonton skins
1 egg, beaten


Make the chicken stock. Place all of the ingredients in a large stockpot and cover three-quarters of the way with cold water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, and slowly simmer for four hours, skimming every thirty minutes to remove the impurities that rise to the surface. Strain and cook the stock over medium heat for thirty to forty-five minutes or until you reach three quarts of liquid. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Bake the sweet potatoes for forty-five minutes, or until just tender. Remove the sweet potatoes from the oven and cool to room temperature. Peel the sweet potatoes, discarding the skins, and cut the flesh into large chunks. Heat four tablespoons of the butter in a large saucepan and add the leek and onions. Cook over medium heat for eight to ten minutes, or until translucent. Add the sweet potatoes and two quarts of the stock and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Tie the thyme, parsley stem, bay leaf, and peppercorns in a piece of cheesecloth and add it to the pan. Lower the heat to medium, and simmer for thirty minutes. Remove and discard the spice bag and season to taste with salt and pepper. Purée the soup in a blender for two minutes, or until smooth, and pass through a fine-mesh sieve. Return the soup to the pan and slowly bring to a boil. Thin to the desired consistency with the remaining stock and season to taste with salt and pepper. Stir in the remaining two tablespoons of butter. Make the ravioli. Cook the leek in the butter in a small sauté pan over medium heat for five minutes or until translucent. Add the cream and cook for two minutes, or until it is completely absorbed. Set the leek aside to cool. In a bowl, combine the leek with the ham and season to taste with pepper. Lay twelve wonton skins on a flat surface and place a spoonful of the ham mixture in the corner of each wonton. Brush the edges of the remaining twelve wonton skins with the egg and place them over the filling, egg side down. Firmly press the edges of each ravioli together, removing any air pockets and completely sealing. Cook the ravioli in boiling salted water for three to four minutes, or until they float. Remove the ravioli from the water with a slotted spoon and drain thoroughly in a colander. Ladle some of the soup into each bowl and place three warm ravioli in the center. Sprinkle the chopped chives around the bowls.

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