Monday, June 30, 2014

Herbed Ricotta Cakes

 These delightful little crispy nuggets are made with ricotta, Parmesan, chopped fresh herbs and spinach.  They're rolled in breadcrumbs and drizzled with olive oil then baked to a crispy golden perfection.  These are great right out of the oven all crispy and hot or top with your favorite marinara sauce, then sprinkle with grated fontina or Parmesan cheese, Bellisimo!


Makes 20 2 1/2 inch cakes

1 pound whole milk ricotta cheese drained in a wire mesh for at least 2 hours.
1 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup chopped fresh spinach
1 1/2 to 2 cups fresh bread crumbs, plus more for rolling
2 eggs
1 tablespoon fresh flat leaf parsley, minced
1 tablespoon fresh oregano, minced
1 tablespoon fresh basil, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt or to taste
black pepper to taste
olive oil

your favorite marinara sauce, heated
Parmesan or fontina cheese grated 

Line a sheet pan with parchment paper and drizzle a little olive oil over pan.
Preheat the oven to 375° F.

In a large bowl, combine the drained ricotta cheese, Parmesan cheese, chopped spinach, minced herbs, eggs,  salt and pepper.  Add 1 1/2 cups bread crumbs and mix together keeping it light.  If mixture is too wet, add up to a 1/2 cup more breadcrumbs, until mixture comes together in a semi moist but not dry mass.

I used a medium sized cookie scoop (2 tablespoons) to form each ball, then dropped them in a bowl with the extra bread crumbs, rolling around to fully coat each ball.  Pat them lightly between your hands forming them into neat little balls.   

Place the balls on the prepared sheet pan, no need to flatten the balls, they will spread into nice even cakes during baking.  Drizzle a little more olive oil over each ball and bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes.  After 15 minutes, carefully flip the cakes over and bake an additional 15 to 20 minutes until golden brown.

These can be served dipped into your favorite marinara sauce or if you like, arrange hot cakes in a baking dish and top with hot marinara sauce then sprinkle Parmesan or fontina cheese over top and bake in a 375° oven to melt the cheese about 8 to 10 minutes.  Enjoy!


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