Parma Ham and Calimyrna Fig Ravioli with Regency Nut Chutney
Chef Hans Schadler has welcomed guests to the Williamsburg Inn for many years, offering dishes which are at once elegant and delicious. There may be no better place to celebrate an American Thanksgiving or Christmas season. This perfect appetizer combines the smoky taste of ham with dried figs and cheese, accompanying the dish with a chutney packed with many kinds of nuts. Chef Schadler has a possible shortcut for the chutney: purchase a jar of Roland Major Grey Chutney and add the nuts listed below.
- Regency Nut Chutney
- Water - 1 cup
- Distilled White Vinegar - 1/2 cup
- Corn Starch or Arrowroot - 1/2 teaspoon
- Sugar - 1/2 cup
- Cashews - 1/2 cup
- Pecans - 1/2 cup, shelled
- Almonds - 1/2 cup, shelled
- Filberts - 1/2 cup, shelled
- Brazil nuts - 1/2 cup, shelled
- Pistachios - 1/2 cup, shelled
- Green Bell Pepper - 1, peeled, seeded, and diced small
- Red Bell Pepper - 1, peeled, seeded, and diced small
- Yellow Bell Pepper - 1, peeled, seeded, and diced small
- Mango or Papaya - 1 cup, diced small
- Ginger - 1 cup, fresh or candied, diced small
- Orange Zest - 1 tablespoon
- Calimyrna figs - 4, quartered
- Calimyrna figs - 4 ounces, dried, diced
- Ricotta cheese - 4 ounces
- Parma ham - 12 slices, thin, cut in half
- Orange Wedges - 12, or small cantaloupe melon fans
- Mixed baby greens - 1 cup
- Parsley or Fresh Chives - 1/4 cup, chopped
To prepare the chutney: Mix the water, vinegar, and sugar together in a medium non-aluminum saucepan and simmer for 30 minutes over low heat. Add the peppers, mango, ginger, and orange zest and cook 2 to 3 minutes. Thicken with the corn starch or arrowroot. Add the figs and nuts and simmer 5 minutes. Pour the mixture into a large mixing bowl, add the nuts, and let cool. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside in a cool place for 2 to 5 days. Store up to three weeks in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
To prepare the ham and fig ravioli: Mix the diced figs and ricotta cheese. Spread half of the ham slices on a work surface and put one teaspoon of the cheese mixture in the center of each. Top with the remaining ham slices. Press all sides firmly to seal. Cut into ravioli with a round cookie cutter.
To serve: Place three raviolis in a circle on each chilled plate. Make a small mound of mixed baby greens in the center of each. Garnish with orange wedges or cantaloupe fans, four fig quarters taken from the chutney mixture, and Regency nut chutney. Sprinkle with chopped parsley or chives.