Something different for your next gathering! Fast and super easy to make, looks like something you’d get from a gourmet deli but is super cheap. This ticks all my “food for parties” boxes!
You know when you see a recipe for a fast, fabulous appetiser but when you read the recipe, the ingredients cost $30 involving things like a fillet of wild caught cedar smoked Alaskan salmon (don’t you dare think of getting less than the best!) and 5 different types of herbs? I see recipes like that in gourmet magazines and I so want to be that kind of person who can spend a small fortune to be able to make gourmet food fast.
But I’m not and never will be. I believe in and love quality ingredients, especially locally grown produce I often pick up at my local farmers’ market. And I will splurge on wild caught cedar smoked Alaskan salmon on occasion. But typically, I’ll serve things like that plain. Because my rule of thumb is: the more expensive an ingredient is, do less with it.
But on a day to day basis, I cook with everyday ingredients and actually thrive on coming up with “gourmet” and unique ways to dress up ordinary ingredients. Like ricotta. Your stock standard, supermarket ricotta. 🙂
The thing with this baked ricotta is that it is going to be better if you make it with a fresh Italian ricotta. But it is still really fabulous made with supermarket ricotta. Especially because I share my little tip for turning ordinary ricotta into a posh type ricotta. 🙂
Baking the ricotta creates a gorgeous golden crust on the surface and it’s beautifully warm and creamy inside. (PS The better the quality of the ricotta, the creamier). It spreads easily and is a dipping consistency too. I made this in two ramekins (well, tapas dishes) but you can make one large one OR even make individual ones to serve at a posh dinner party (ooh, that idea just popped in my head!).
Honestly. How can you compare this baked ricotta with dolloping a lump of ricotta on a cheese board? I know which one I would go for…. 😉
So….something different for your next party? – Nagi
- 2 cups of full fat ricotta, the best you can afford
- 1 to 3 tbsp full fat cream or milk, optional (only required if you aren't using fresh Italian ricotta)
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 2 medium garlic cloves, minced
- ¼ tsp salt
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- Preheat oven to 180C/350F.
- Place the ricotta in a bowl. If you are using supermarket ricotta (as opposed to fresh Italian ricotta), it might be a bit dry. Use the cream or milk to loosen the ricotta into creamy "peanut butter" type consistency (ie. easily spreadable).
- Add the lemon, garlic and salt and mix to combine.
- Get to 1 cup capacity ramekins or any other oven proof dish (I used tapas dishes). Divide the ricotta between the dishes and drizzle over 1 tbsp olive oil (reserve other tbsp for after baking).
- Bake for 15 to 20 minutes until the top is lightly browned.
- Remove from oven, drizzle with remaining 1 tbsp olive oil then serve immediately with toasted pieces of bread (tip: rub lightly with garlic - it's amazing!).
- Fresh thyme, parsley or any other herbs, finely chopped (pictured)
- Chopped tomatoes, red onion and parsley (pictured)
- Finely chopped antipasto (eg olives, sun dried tomatoes)
Nutrition, for baked ricotta only.