12 Recipes of Christmas… # 11 Malfatti’s

What is a Malfatti? Well, let’s start with a little story. While growing up in Napa, California, it was a tradition to have ravioli’s and malfati’s from The Depot. It’s a great little place, where the locals go for a killer meal. My Grandma Lu would get these malfatti’s and we would have them for Christmas Eve dinner.

One year the power was out because of a storm, so we had ravoli and malfatti by candlelight. Even after moving to Utah, my grandmother would buy malfatti from The Depot and freeze them, then bring them on the plane with her to us for that same tradition.

It has been 13 years since my grandmother passed away. I have been carrying this tradition on by serving malfattis for Christmas Eve dinner for the last 8 years. This year will be the same.

So what is a Malfatti? It is the insides of the ravioli. I guess instead of wasting the leftover stuffing of the ravioli, the roll the stuffing into a small sausage shape and simmer, then serve with marinara sauce. It’s delicious…. simple and flavorful. Here’s to traditions! Happy baking!


1 cup frozen spinach, drained and thawed
1/2 cup ricotta cheese
1 cup Italian breadcrumbs
2 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
1/2 cup diced green onions
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 garlic clove, minced

Mix all ingredients together until well combined. Take by rounded teaspoons full and form into little rolls the shape of a sausage. Place on a coolie sheet in layers and refrigerate overnight or at least 3 hours. Cool malfatti in a large pot of boiling water for a few minutes at a time. They will rise to the top when cooked. Remove malfatti from the pot with a large slotted spoon. Arrange in a casserole dish and cover with marinara sauce. Bake in the oven at 350 degrees for 15 minutes or until warmed through. Serve with hot crusty french bread and a large green salad! 🙂

5 Replies to “12 Recipes of Christmas… # 11 Malfatti’s”

  1. Ohhhh! I am so glad I came across this recipe! I love Malfatti’s and I’m from Napa too! (Lol!, I’m also a Custom Cake Designer/Baker) The Depoot is the one thing I miss aside from Buttercream bakery! Thanks for sharing your recipe. Can’t wait to try it!!

  2. @Baker- I miss Buttercream Bakery too. I haven’t been back for almost 8 years….. desperate times call for desperate measures. Thanks! It’s nice to meet another person from Napa.

  3. Hi,
    My husband is from Napa and my inlaws would have malfattis every Christmas eve. Do you have a recipe for the meat sauce?

    1. The recipe for marinara sauce I use is pretty simple. 1- 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes, 1/2 medium sweet onion, diced, 2 tablespoons olive oil, 2 teaspoons dried basil, 1 teaspoon kosher salt, 1pound ground beef (optional)
      In a large skillet on medium heat cook diced onion into caramelized in all of oil, add ground beef and cook till brown. Poor in crushed tomatoes basil and salt and simmer for 30 minutes. Yum!

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