A few nights ago I enjoyed some fantastic herbed ricotta at an outstanding Jacksonville restaurant. The restaurant, Taverna, is a staple in my life, as it is only a few miles from my home. Everything on Taverna’s menu is spectacular, so if you ever find yourself in Jacksonville I highly recommend making time to enjoy a meal there.
Last night, my mom had a few people over and needed some simple, yet delicious appetizers to serve during their monthly ladies game night. Since she was busy with work, I offered to prepare all the appetizers for her, and as soon as I opened the refrigerator, I knew I had to make my own herbed ricotta.
Since I have practically memorized the list of recipes in all of Ina Garten’s cookbooks, I knew she had a recipe for herbed ricotta. If you have her “How Easy is That?” cookbook, the recipe can be found on page 73. If you do not own that cookbook, I have provided the recipe below.
I decided to tweak a few ingredients, mostly because I had three cups of ricotta on hand and did not want that extra cup to sit in the fridge for months (and eventually be thrown out). So I used three cups of part-skim ricotta instead of two cups of Ina Garten’s homemade ricotta. I also added more scallion than she suggested since I ended up having an extra tablespoon ( I chopped two scallions and ended up having a little over one tablespoon more than she called for). I also added more dill because I find dill adds a lot of flavor, so I put in a tablespoon more than she suggested. Since the chives I had purchased were not the freshest, I stuck to her measurement. However, I added an extra teaspoon of salt because it really needed it.
Sadly, it was a rainy day in Jacksonville yesterday so I could not grill the bread. Instead, I toasted it in the oven after brushing it with olive oil and sprinkling it with salt and pepper. I chose to use a french baguette instead of sourdough because I thought the small size would allow me to produce a larger quantity and would be easier to eat while mingling.
The finished product was amazing. I received rave reviews from my mother’s guests and even got my father to break his diet to try one. I would highly recommend making this dish for a cocktail party, get-together, or just a casual summer snack.
I hope to make homemade ricotta by the end of the summer so be on the look out for more ricotta recipes on my blog!