Tag Archives: ricotta

Back in Accra, making ricotta zucchini dumplings

img_20180707_104423

Back in Accra, where it is rainy season and a cool 26C. Nice! The monthly Goethe market  has moved to the W.E.B. Dubois centre, and was very nice indeed. First Saturday of the month, if you are ever in Accra, it is great for presents. Fabric, bags, jewelry, carvings, shea butter soap, and much more. Me, I bought bagels, eggs and spinach.

img_20180707_104213

Window shopping for future present needs: the batik bags are gorgeous. And I was very happy to see Afrisocks there.

img_20180707_104014

I’ve seen Afrisocks online, and plan to get some for Christmas presents. Nice to actually see the real thing, though. New patterns coming in October or November, and the current ones are great too. Also ladies socks are planned.

With rainy season in swing and some household items going moldy (suitcases, toiletry bag), best to not do any Christmas shopping too early.  I bought spinach from Sowgreen (behind the market, usually at Dubois every Saturday) and went home to make these ricotta, courgette and spinach dumplings. Normally that would be challenging here, but I am just back from Rome and had brought back fresh ricotta and zucchini. Yes, I make the most of my checked luggage. Then I saw the recipe in The Guardian yesterday and thought: it is a sign! Whoohoo! I can make that!

Normally I read through well-traveled BBC Good Food magazines, or my increasingly mottled cookbooks, noting recipes to try (preferably with available items like sweet potato, banana, avocado, eggs) while sighing over all the ingredients which are not available here (or are insanely expensive) and debating substitutes. It was fun to just follow the recipe for once.

img_20180707_123021

See  Thomasina Miers’ recipe for ricotta, courgette and spinach dumplings which were quite labour intensive, but very tasty.  I followed the recipe as indicated, just with a splash of KLM red wine from last flight in the tomato sauce. Lots of dumplings left so maybe I will try to freeze some. Or have them with cheese, hmmmm…..

img_20180707_171701

A good weekend to all!

Advertisements

Egg-free cocoa cake with ricotta

imageA friend arrives tomorrow, and the guest bed is made up and spare towels are ready. I am looking forward to chats and tea, to catching up, and to enjoying more of this cake. My friend is allergic to eggs, and I was thinking of making these vegan cupcakes, which look delicious. Maybe next time; today, I made this cocoa cake and very nice it was too.

Egg-free cocoa cake with ricotta

2 cups all purpose wheat flour (I used 00)
1.25 cups sugar
100 grammes butter, softened
250 grames ricotta
1/2 cup cocoa powder (dark, unsweetened)
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup semi-skimmed milk

Mix everything in a bowl. Heat oven to 180C. Line base of a 24cm baking tin with baking parchment, and scoop batter in. Bake at 180C for 50 minutes or so, until it looks done and a cake tester comes out clean. This took longer than expected, the cake is still quite moist and fudgy but really delicious.

image

This is adapted from Eggless Chocolate Cake – Made with Ricotta Cheese, many thanks for the inspiration. I just used a bit more milk and ricotta as my batter was dry, cocoa, but the original looks great too.

Tomorrow the flight of my friend arrives at 5AM (arrrrghhh……) so after breakfast I foresee an early stroll to the farmers market, then some tea and cake. Maybe with the first strawberries? Mmmmmmmm……. A good Sunday  coming up.

image

Zucchini Carrot Ricotta-Pesto Tart #2

Zucchini carrot ricotta pesto tartHappy First Fiesta Friday anniversary! We had neighbours over last night, and thought this might be a good choice to start a light vegetarian dinner. Having Italians over can be daunting, especially when they are excellent cooks and can argue at length about spaghetti widths, aubergine varieties and other such critical culinary points. Making this tart again might work, we thought, and it is also my contribution to the First Fiesta Friday anniversary. Fiesta Friday is like a really interesting weekly neighbourhood dinner, with some familar faces and some new. Each week I am inspired, impressed and grateful for all the wonderful ideas, recipes and writing, so thanks so much! Special thanks to our lovely FF52 co-hosts: Angie@The Novice Gardener, Hilda @Along The Grapevine and Julianna @Foodie On Board.

Zucchini Carrot Ricotta-Pesto Rose Tart
(Initially inspired by Conversation Pieces: Zucchini Carrot Rose Tart)

One package ready-made puff pastry
3 zucchini
3 carrots
130 grammes fresh pesto, about 4 tbs
250 grammes ricotta, about 4 tbs
Salt, pepper

Roll out your dough into a pie dish. (Here it came with carta al forno, baking paper.) Slice the zucchini and carrots lengthwise into long thin strips, with a potato peeler or a mandolin. (This task is much easier when you have a patient husband who is handy in the kitchen..)
image

Mix pesto and ricotta, half of each, with a little salt and pepper. Spread some ricotta-pesto mix on the strips of carrot and zucchini. Roll the strips somewhat tightly together, so they looks like a rosebud. (Yes, albeit a pesto-smeared, green one.) This is finicky, but the rolls held together well. Alternate carrot and zucchini, rolling until you have a good sized roll. Lift it carefully over onto pastry, and add last strips to fill the dish. Tuck the pastry edges over. If you have extra pesto-ricotta, feel free to spoon it into the crevices.
image
Bake at 200C until it looks done. Time and temperature depends on your pastry and oven, last time 20 min at 180 was enough but this time it took 35-40 min and I increased he temperature. Slice into wedges and enjoy. Enjoy! We did! And our dinner with the neighbours went well, I think. They are really nice, forgiving of our gaps on speaking Italian, and we laughed a lot.