Gallery: Market Tours: Homemade Pasta and More at Pastosa Ravioli in Bensonhurst

Pastosa Ravioli
Pastosa Ravioli

The storefront.

Giant Mixer
Giant Mixer

Ravioli filling gets mixed in this behemoth before getting stuffed into the fresh pasta dough.

Ravioli Filling
Ravioli Filling

Ricotta cheese filling, in bulk.

Coming Off the Line
Coming Off the Line

A worker gently pulls the newly-formed ravioli out of the machine, strips off the excess dough where the ravioli are stamped out, and transfers them to a rack to dry slightly before being packaged.

Packing Up
Packing Up

Pastosa's pastas are packaged right on site soon after they're made. At peak production, the store churns out 15,000 - 20,000 ravioli a day.

Fresh Lasagna Sheets
Fresh Lasagna Sheets

Meanwhile, in another area of the huge commercial kitchen, a worker stacks fresh lasagna noodles as they come out of the machine.

Cavatelli
Cavatelli

This machine has just produced cavatelli, but the staff at Pastosa have assembled a fleet of Italian-made pasta dyes so that each machine can make a variety of pasta shapes.

Cavatelli Closeup
Cavatelli Closeup
Drying Racks
Drying Racks

Fresh pasta is high in moisture and must be dried slightly before being packed up.

Ravioli Case
Ravioli Case

And there they are, lined up in all their glory and ready to take home.

Not Your Mama's Ravioli
Not Your Mama's Ravioli

Joe Ajello says that the first recipe created for the store was the large round ricotta cheese ravioli. Over 50 years (and many trends later), it's still the top seller. Still, Pastosa offers an incredible range of stuffed pastas, like these luxurious seafood ravioli, to accommodate all tastes.

Tortellini, Too
Tortellini, Too

Pastosa also offers a variety of tortellini.

Fresh Pasta Section
Fresh Pasta Section

The fresh pastas made on site range from the basic fettuccine...

Fresh Pasta, Continued
Fresh Pasta, Continued

...to the daring squid ink pasta.

Dried Pasta
Dried Pasta

And of course, the store also offers an incredible variety of dried pasta, in all shapes and sizes.

Not Just Pasta
Not Just Pasta

Pastosa specializes in homemade pastas, but offers a full complement of Italian and Italian American products, like these imported cheeses.

Meat Case
Meat Case

Cured meats and hams.

Olive Bar
Olive Bar

Pastosa offers a wide array of olives. On the lower level are a variety of stuffed sweet and hot peppers, just a small glimpse of the many prepared foods the store makes daily.

Tomatoes
Tomatoes

When you have pasta, you need tomatoes to go with it. Pastosa cans its own both for its other stores and for wholesale.

Pretty Packaging
Pretty Packaging

Italians just seem to know how to make things attractive. These olive oil tins are no exception.

Dried Porcini Mushrooms
Dried Porcini Mushrooms

A staple in the Italian kitchen.

Sardines
Sardines

More nice packaging on these salt-cured sardines.

Eggplant Caponata
Eggplant Caponata

The classic dish of eggplant stewed in a sweet and sour vinegar-based sauce, all canned and ready to eat.

Coffee Soda
Coffee Soda

New Yorkers have our
Manhattan Special coffee soda. Italians have Stappi.

Cannoli Cream
Cannoli Cream

Pastosa sells frozen prepared cannoli cream. As awesome as this stuff is inside a delicate fried pastry shell, I can't help but think about eating it on fruit, cake, or...just straight from the bag, Reddi Whip-style.