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Ricotta torte and variations - easy breakfast if precooked

 
 
Reply Thu 9 Feb, 2012 05:16 pm
I've made this about twenty times, now, using a basic recipe and adding whatever I have around at the time as additional ingredients. I slice the pie into 6 wedges and freeze the wedges in foil packets, so.. 6 quick microwaved small breakfasts.

A ricotta torte can be sweet or savory. So far I've made only savory ones. I'm working up to making a sweet one with dried fruit but keep making one more savory one.
I've also substituted small curd cottage cheese (less expense) for ricotta and it worked fine, though I ended up thinking next time I'd put the cottage cheese in a blender for a few seconds. Anyway, I used the same amount (15 or 16 oz.)

I'll give the basic recipe (which is modified from two online recipes) that I use now, and variations on a theme.

The Pie Crust This is an olive oil crust; I suppose you can substitute canola, etc. I've not had to "grease" the pie plate as a prep for adding the pie dough.*

I used the recipe from this site, but added to it so I made sure to have enough dough to fill the pie plate and sides easily.
http://chocolateandzucchini.com/archives/2009/05/easy_olive_oil_tart_crust.php
That's a good food blog if you don't know it, on a lot of people's favorite list besides mine.

My version, and with US measurements -

4 oz whole wheat flour, 4.8 oz all purpose - x 1.25 = 11 total ounces flour
yesterday I used 5.5 oz. of all purpose, 3.0 of spelt, 2.5 of whole wheat; this turned out well, but I need to change it into fractions of cups to make it easier to measure than ounces - I have a scale but I'd rather use measuring cups.
1.25 tsp salt
1.25 tsp dried herbs - (pinch of garlic flakes, not quite a tsp of curry powder - your choices may vary)
75 ml olive oil
150 ml cold water

grease pan lightly if not non stick coat (I suppose it's a good idea overall; I use my old glass pie plates, haven't had a problem with the oil dough sticking.)

combine flour salt herbs
add oil, mix with fork (well, for me it doesn't mix well until you start to add the water)
add water, mix until just absorbed
knead lightly in bowl until dough in a ball

turn dough on work surface
sprinkle a little flour on the ball and rolling pin
each time you roll it, add a little four underneath and on dough if seems getting sticky
do not overwork

put dough in pan, refrigerate 30 minutes
add filling, bake until done at 350-375. (test with fork that it's not all wiggly in center)



Filling

This is pretty much from this site:
http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Ricotta-Spinach-Pie-1548
(I let the crust stay cold, that's quite important with an olive oil crust, but if you are using a packaged regular crust bring it to room temp.)

Ingredients
1 refrigerated pie crust (half of 15-ounce package), room temperature
1 teaspoon all purpose flour

3 tablespoons butter
1 medium onion, chopped
1 10-ounce package frozen chopped spinach, thawed, squeezed dry
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 15-ounce container ricotta cheese
8 ounce mozzarella cheese, grated
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
3 large eggs, beaten to blend

copying the filling instructions part:

Melt butter in heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and sauté until tender, about 8 minutes. Mix in spinach, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Sauté until all liquid from spinach evaporates, about 3 minutes.
I use olive oil instead of butter to saute the onions; I use fresh spinach if available. I also often substitute kale or chard, and I parboil those first from fresh before draining and chopping, saving the stems or tossing them. I've added canned artichoke quarters, cut up. Yesterday I used kale, spinach, some leftover spicy cauliflower, and frozen peas, besides the onions. Some basil and parsley and a splurch of chile pepper, no nutmeg. I'm starting to like using extra large eggs.

Combine ricotta, mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses in large bowl. Mix in eggs. Add spinach mixture; blend well.
I almost never have ricotta, mozzarella, and parmesan in the refrigerator at the same time, what am I, rich? I've even only used ricotta, and might have added a fourth egg. I once added some cheddar, or other cheese, different but also good.

Spoon cheese mixture into pie crust. Bake until filling is set in center and brown (slightly brown only) on top, about 40 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes. Cut pie into wedges.

I've never had the filling spill over, it doesn't "grow" that much. So far.


*I've been thinking on how to make this gluten free (change flours, rice, garbanzo/fava, maybe others), but can't easily see how to make it dairy free and work, unless just using egg whites instead of whole eggs counts as dairy free for those who can't eat dairy. I've no idea how egg whites work with, say, firm tofu

I'll post back when I get up to making a sweet ricotta torte - I suppose there are endless possible variations there too. Have to wait until I have more room in my small freezer.

Adds with a sentimental sigh, I ate my first slice of spinach ricotta torte in Venice (It) on a cold March day, us buying slices from a bakery, warmed up if I remember, and sitting on a bench somewhere. We never did go out to dinner that day, it was so filling. Thicker than the one I make now.


So, any other ricotta torte recipes, or breakfast pie recipes?
Invention is the better part of valour, y'know...
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Type: Discussion • Score: 3 • Views: 4,140 • Replies: 25
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farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Feb, 2012 05:27 pm
@ossobuco,
I want it sweet with a vanillowy and anisetta taste. Maybe marscipone and ricotta layers, one with the anisetta and the other with vanilla and maybe some citrusy flavor like a blood orange cream.

Im makin me hungry here.
ehBeth
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Feb, 2012 06:06 pm
@ossobuco,
I like savoury pies. One of my favourites from my old veggieish days is a Russian mushroom-cabbage-cottage cheese pie. Good anytime of the day.

http://windowstorussia.com/a-russian-cabbage-pie.html
roger
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Feb, 2012 06:10 pm
@ossobuco,
Is this like the pastry they sometimes call canoli, or something like that, only without the shell. If it is, I'm in favor of it.
ehBeth
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Feb, 2012 06:22 pm
@roger,
The recipe that ossoB posted reads more like a variant of a spinach quiche than a cannoli

http://img4.myrecipes.com/i/recipes/ck/10/06/herbed-ricotta-tart-ck-l.jpg

v

http://www.trestelle.ca/images/recipes2010/9381MM_FW09_ORG_CANNOLI_210.jpg
roger
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Feb, 2012 06:29 pm
@ehBeth,
Get rid of that stuff that's turned green, and it still sounds good.
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Feb, 2012 06:32 pm
@farmerman,
Ok, let's do this..
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Feb, 2012 06:38 pm
@ehBeth,
Saving that one, like mushrooms and cabbage m'self..
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Feb, 2012 06:41 pm
@roger,
Yes, they share the ricotta component and the sugar in sweet ricotta tarts (I can't decide how to spell tarts, torta, torte, I'll use any of those)

Geez, Roger, canoli for breakfast, now we're cooking..
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Feb, 2012 06:43 pm
@ehBeth,
My pie is not that lumpy!!!
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Feb, 2012 06:51 pm
@farmerman,
I see you know I love blood oranges.
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Feb, 2012 07:17 pm
Ok, cannoli and what to do about it -

http://www.epicurious.com/tools/searchresults?search=cannoli&x=31&y=8

0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Feb, 2012 09:30 pm
I've got quite an interest in tagging, and I think that matters re a lot of threads.

I'm not in the mood now, but back in the morning. I've changed in my tagging ways, and I think some of this is interesting past, er, food. Far as I can see, whoever tagged it food shut the thread off for more specific interests. Or should food always be the first word?

Merits a thread. I've been on both sides of the issue, somewhat aggravated with myself for that. I'm even largely to blame. Discussion anon. Nag me if I forget.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Feb, 2012 09:45 pm
@ossobuco,
I see breakfast has won so far, probably since I spent some time quite a while ago tagging Western Breakfast as breakfast, for fun, tagging those posts at all. But food and recipes follow, and I tagged a lot of that too to give us categories. The trouble, I've gathered since, with generalities, is that it's harder for specifics to show up.

I now think it's a waste to say food, recipes in your only five spots, leaving you at best three.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Feb, 2012 10:52 pm
@ossobuco,
Moving along, how to make cannoli -

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/the-best-of/cannoli-alla-siciliana-recipe/index.html
farmerman
 
  2  
Reply Fri 10 Feb, 2012 05:09 am
@ossobuco,
cannoli tubes should be kept in dry paper bags in the oven until ready to pipe FRESH ricotta filling into them, then we dust them with powdered sugar and eat with a nice cup of coffee.
Mame
 
  1  
Reply Fri 10 Feb, 2012 11:01 am
@ossobuco,
That sounds like an awful lot of work for a breakfast! Smile I'm a cereal and grapefruit girl, myself. Fast, simple, easy.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Fri 10 Feb, 2012 12:50 pm
@farmerman,
Where'd ya get the metal cannoli tubes? or what do you use instead? I suppose a place like sur la table or Williams-Sonoma has them. Well, hey, you live in the east, more italian shops. There's a certain dearth of italian places here.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Fri 10 Feb, 2012 12:55 pm
@Mame,
I never cook like that in the morning, good grief, Mame. I know you, loved your camp cook tales, you actually are able to get up and cook up a storm. Me, I lounge with coffee and at best putter around in the early a.m. Thus the things I freeze as possible breakfast stuff to heat up in the micro... apple torte, pizza slices, ricotta torte slices.. or throw together a tuna sammich.
Mame
 
  1  
Reply Fri 10 Feb, 2012 02:44 pm
@ossobuco,
I had a tuna sandwich for breakfast yesterday Smile And tuna melts today for lunch - yum!
 

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