Ricotta is a fresh cheese I particularly cherish as it is so multifaceted and useful that it's impossible for me not to keep a tub of it in my fridge in case it comes in handy! I also love "Pancakes" of any kind, so when I found this "Ricotta Fritta" recipe on the Swiss blog "Posie's Place", I knew that I had to try this wonderful Italian speciality.
In fact, this traditional Pugliese recipe was taken from Jamie Oliver's "Jamie's Italy" cookbook and has circulated from one blog to another via Pam's wonderful site... I adapted it only very slightly.
This recipe is very simple, yet very subtle in flavor and needs no additional ingredient to make it taste or look better; it's quite perfect the way it is!
Those fluffy little ricotta "cushions" are very pleasant with their light nutty tinge conferred by the parmesan cheese, that appears after every bite. It could very possibly be the food of angels so much these "Ricotta Fritta" pancakes are delightful and transcendentally gorgeous!!!
450g Good crumbly ricotta cheese
2 Tsp Freshly grated parmesan cheese, plus extra for serving
3 Tbs Plain white flour
1 Large egg
Salt, to taste
Pepper, to taste
A pinch of nutmeg (optional) or 1 Tsp Grated lemon rind (optuional)
Olive oil, for frying
1. Mix the ricotta with the flour, parmesan cheese, egg, nutmeg (optional)/lemon rind (optional), salt and pepper.
2. Place in the fridge for about 30 minutes.
3. Heat a nonstick frying pan, add some olive oil and fry spoonfuls of the ricotta mixture over a medium heat until golden brown on each side.
4. Reserve in a warm oven while frying the other pancakes.
5. Serve warm sprinkled with grated parmesan.
The original recipe only asked for 1 1/2 tablespoons flour, but if you are using the ricotta cheese that can be found in supermarkets (Galbani, etc...), then you'll need to add a little more flour like I did. If the pancakes are too wet, then there's a risk that they might fall apart when being fried.
One could replace the nutmeg (original recipe) by grated lemon rind or use both together (that's what I did).
Those "Ricotta Pancakes" are delicious when eaten plain or with fresh tomato sauce, with a basil and tomato salad or any other kind of salad as well as any steamed vegetable (broccoli, cauliflower, Brussel sprouts, etc...).
They are also perfect when served as starters or as hot canapés.
(Puglia -Pic by www.alberghi-in-italia.it)
(Ricotta -Pic by www.caviarrusse.com)