Saturday, May 31, 2008

Ricotta Stuffed Mushrooms and Peaches

Hello from Oz! One of the things I really like about Oz, aside from the weather and the flying monkeys, is the Greek deli down the street from my house that sells fresh ricotta for $5.99 a kilo. Here are two ricotta recipes I put together back in February, back when peaches were in season. They're not so great side by side, but you can serve the first one for dinner and the second one for dessert.

If you don't feel like baking these things, I've also had good results cooking them on the stovetop in a wok with a cover.

Disclaimer: I tend to measure with my eyeballs, so I'm not entirely sure I've got all the measures and cooking times right. If your common cooking sense conflicts with either recipe, I would suggest listening to your common sense.

ricotta stuffed mushrooms

25-30 crimini mushrooms
1 ear corn
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 large red bell pepper, (capsicum) diced
1 bunch fresh coriander, chopped (oregano and basil also work well)
250 g ricotta
2 tablespoons olive oil

Wash mushrooms, set caps aside, and dice stems. Un-silk corn and chop kernels off cob. Saute mushroom stems and corn in butter for 15 minutes, adding diced capsicum after 10 minutes. Place mushroom stem mixture in mixing bowl; add coriander and ricotta; mix well. Stuff mushroom caps with ricotta mixture and arrange on a cookie sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and bake at 375 degrees for 30-45 minutes, or until mushrooms are cooked through.

ricotta stuffed peaches

4-5 peaches
150 g ricotta
a handful of crushed walnuts (pecans or pistachios would also be good)
2 tbsp finely chopped mint (better yet, blend it in a blender)
1-4 tbsp honey

Halve peaches and remove pits. In mixing bowl, mix ricotta, walnuts, mint, and honey to taste. (This is one of those things that will taste good raw if it's going to taste good cooked.) Stuff peaches with ricotta mixture and arrange on a cookie sheet. Bake at 375 degrees for 30-45 minutes. Be sure to put some water in the bottom of the cookie sheet to prevent the peaches from dessicating.

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