The Stilwell’s Andrew Fontes Teases Lemon Poppy Tortellini Recipe Ahead of Exclusive Dinner

Photo courtesy of The Stilwell

Growing up in central Kansas and attending Kansas State University, Andrew Fontes developed a deep appreciation for Midwestern culinary traditions. So much so, that after he graduated with a degree in computer science, he moved to the Kansas City area for Johnson County Community College’s Chef Apprenticeship Program.

While in school, Fontes was Rye Restaurant’s lead line cook, and after graduation, he joined Loews Kansas City Hotel’s culinary team as the sous chef at the hotel’s upscale restaurant, The Stilwell when it opened.

On Thursday, October 27, The Stilwell and Prisoner Wine Company are teaming up for an exclusive dinner of five seasonal courses curated by Fontes. Each course comes with a wine pairing, and tickets are $105 each.

Ahead of the dinner, Fontes is teasing his style by sharing his recipe for Lemon Poppy Tortellini. Here’s how you can make it at home.

The Stilwell’s Lemon Poppy Tortellini



500 grams all-purpose flour

4 whole eggs

3 egg yolks

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon water

Salt to taste 


1 gallon of whole milk

½ cup lemon juice 

20 grams salt 



2 lemons (lemon juice and zest)

2 tablespoon salt 

1 cup chopped herbs (parsley, dill, chive)

Smoked Salmon Brine: 

1 salmon 

2 quarts of water 

½ cup salt

½ cup sugar

1 sprig of dill

2 lemons

To Plate:

Simmering water for blanching pasta

3 cloves and 1 head of garlic and shallot (shaved)

2 tablespoons browned butter

½ each of lemon squeezers

Heavy pinch of chopped herbs (parsley, dill, chive)

Heavy pinch of poppy seeds 

Smoked salmon flaked and shredded 


Make the salmon brine:

In a small pot, add water, salt, sugar, dill, and lemons split and squeezed. 

Bring water to a boil until the sugar and salt dissolve. Remove from heat and let cool.

Submerge salmon in brine and let rest to chill for at least two hours—preferably overnight.

Make the dough:

Make a concave mountain or crater with flour and crack eggs into it, then pour in water, oil, and add seasoning. 

Mix together by hand or with a fork adding a little of the flour walls until a nice dough starts to form.

Knead dough until nice and elastic. Wrap with plastic and place in the fridge for one hour.

While the dough rests, heat up a smoker or oven to 225 degrees F.

Strain brined salmon and roast on a sheet tray for 30 minutes.

Make the ricotta:

Heat milk and salt in a heavy bottom pot on medium heat until it reaches 180 degrees F.

Once at temperature turn off the heat and add lemon juice. Whisk together and cover for 15 minutes.

The top layer will be nice and curdled. Remove from pot with a slotted spoon and strain into a cheesecloth.

Press out extra liquid and let cool.

Make the tortellini:

Using a pasta rolling attachment and plenty of flour, roll out pasta into long thin sheets.

Cut sheets into even 2-inch squares and mix the ricotta cheese and the rest of the filling ingredients.

Using a piping bag or spoon give each square about a tablespoon of the filling in the center.

Fold squares into triangles. Fold triangles into desired shapes.

Make the dish: 

Blanch tortellini for 90 to 120 seconds in a simmering pot of seasoned water. 

While blanching, heat up a skillet with oil, then sweat garlic and shallot in oil.

Add tortellini to skillet with about a half cup of the blanching water.

Add the butter and squeeze half of a lemon into the pan.

Once butter is melted and a nice sauce is formed, go ahead and plate up and garnish with herbs.

Salmon can be added, flaked on top as a garnish.

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