Hay smoked ham and buffalo ricotta tortellini with burnt apple

By Chef Leigh McDivitt

By Chef Leigh McDivett




  • 250g Australian ham (we used Kurobuta ham from Black Berkshire Pigs)
  • 100g buffalo ricotta
  • 50g of the fat from the ham
  • 1 tablespoon of seeded mustard
  • 2 tablespoons chopped flat leaf parsley
  • 2 good handfuls of hay from your local pet store - optional


  • 250g plain flour
  • 4 organic and free range egg yolks
  • 2 organic and free range eggs
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • Extra flour for dusting
  • 2 egg whites

Burnt apple

  • 6 Granny Smith apples
  • 1 cup of sugar

Cider Jus

  • 2kg of pork bones
  • 375ml bottle of cider
  • 1 bunch of thyme
  • 6 eschallots
  • 2 cinnamon quills
  • 5 litres of chicken stock (preferably home made)


  1. 1.
    Jus: Roast the pork bones in a 200 degree Celsius oven until golden brown Once roasted, add the bones into a large stock pot and cover with chicken stock. Bring to the boil and then reduce to a simmer for at least three hours. After three hours, strain the liquid from the bones, keeping the liquid. Discard bones and put liquid aside. In a new stock pot, sweat the eschallots and thyme for a few minutes, until fragrant. Add the cinnamon quills and stir for a minute. Add the bottle of cider and bring to the boil. Once the liquid has reduced by half, add the pork stock. Bring to the boil and then reduce to a simmer. Let it slowly reduce and skim off any scum. You will know the jus is finally ready when it’s a lovely brown colour and luxurious in texture. Strain and set aside until serving.
  2. 2.
    Pasta: Place the flour in a food processor. Add the eggs, the egg yolks and olive oil and then blitz until it comes together. Take the mixture out of the food processor and gently knead together. Wrap the pasta in cling film and set aside to rest for at least an hour. Once rested, take small segments of the pasta and run through a pasta machine several times until you have a lovely, silky smooth, texture. You may need to add flour between each run through the pasta machine, until you get the right feel. The pasta should not be sticky or dry in any way. You need it to feel stretchy and silky smooth. Thickness wise, we took the pasta to 0.5mm depth. Take a 10cm diameter circle cookie cutter and cut pasta circles. Please ensure you cover the circles as you are continuing so that they do not dry out.
  3. 3.
    Burnt apple: Peel the apples and quarter, removing the core. Place in a baking dish and then cover with the sugar. Place in a high temperature oven, approximately 270 degrees Celsius. Every 15 minutes, remove, stir with a large flat spoon and return to the oven. Continue doing this until the mixture is black in colour. Place the mixture into a blender and blitz, adding approximately 125ml of water to help blend. Set aside for plating up.
  4. 4.
    Filling: Dice the ham into 2cm cubes. Place onto a cake rack. Place the hay into a fry pan and then place the rack on top of the pan. Set fire to the hay and then place another pan on top to enclose the smoke around the ham. Leave aside for 2 minutes. Remove the ham from the rack and place into a food processor with the ham fat and roughly blend. Remove the mixture and place it into a bowl. Add the parsley, ricotta and mustard and mix well. Roll the filling into a 2cm diameter balls and set aside.
  5. 5.
    Tortellini: Take the pasta circle, add a ball of the filling and then brush one half of the circle with egg white. Fold in half to seal in the filling, ensuring there is no air trapped around the filling. Fold back the two points around your finger and then squeeze together the points to form a tortellini. Continue doing this for the remainder of the pasta circles. You should aim for at least three or four tortellini per person. Bring a large pot of water to the boil. Add a very generous handful of salt to the water and lower in your tortellini in batches. Because this is fresh pasta, they will cook very quickly, approximately 3 to 5 minutes. They best way to know if they are cooked is when they rise to the surface. Remove to a strainer and drain. If any tortellini split open in the water, please discard. Reheat the Burnt Apple and the Jus. To plate up, place three or so large dobs of burnt apple on the plates, place the tortellini in between the burnt apple. Drizzle over the jus. To decorate, add a few nasturtium leaves. Serve immediately.