I grew up eating quite a bit of Chef Boyardee - for those of you that don't know it's ravioli in a tomato sauce from a can. Yeah I know it's from a CAN but hey as a kid I loved that stuff. Here is my grown-up version of ravioli in tomato sauce, but it is definitely a much more sophisticated version. This is so simple to make and I think you'll have the whole family singing for more!

Serves 4

  • 1 pkg of fresh cheese and spinach ravioli (or your favourite ravioli)
  • 2 tbsp sundried tomato oil or extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 tsp hot chili flakes (more if you like it really hot!)
  • 1/2 cup corned beef, chopped
  • coarse salt and freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1 (28 oz.) can of whole tomatoes
  • 5 cremini mushrooms, sliced thin
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, sliced thin
  • 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup red wine
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock

1. Open the ravioli package and place them into a bowl, making sure that you take apart any ravioli that stick together. This will make it easier later on for you. Set this aside for now.

2.  Preheat a large deep heavy bottom pan on medium high heat, and drizzle in the sundried tomato oil from the jar. Add in the chopped onion, minced garlic, hot chili flakes, corned beef, salt and pepper. Make sure not to over salt since there is a fair amount in the corned beef. Saute for 3 minutes.

3. Then pour in the can of tomatoes, break them up using a wooden spoon or a potato masher. Add in the cremini mushroom slices, fresh basil, balsamic vinegar, and the red wine. Turn the heat down to low, and let it simmer gently for about 30 minutes with the pan mostly covered, stirring occassionally. Make sure that there is a bit of the pan open so the steam can be let out. You want the sauce to thicken.

4. Add in the chicken stock at this point, stir to incorporate, then add in the fresh ravioli pieces. Gently toss it together, and turn the heat even lower, cover the lid and let it cook for another 5-7 minutes or until the ravioli has cooked through. Serve immediately with a good sprinkling of Parmesan cheese, and torn basil leaves.

Cook's suggestion: If you don't want to cook the ravioli in the sauce, or wish to make the sauce ahead for later, then go ahead and put on a large pot of boiling water and cook the ravioli later on. Follow the package instructions. Omit the addition of chicken stock in the recipe.

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