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Baked Ricotta

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Ingredients

Baked Ricotta

2 cups fresh whole-milk ricotta

¼ cup finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

½ cup fresh chèvre (goat cheese)

1 whole egg

2 egg yolks

2 teaspoons thyme leaves, minced

2 tablespoons flat-leaf parsley leaves, minced

Finely grated zest of 1 lemon

2 teaspoons kosher salt

Freshly cracked black pepper

Extra virgin olive oil

Pickled apricots (recipe follows)

Grilled pita bread or crackers, for serving

Pickled Apricots

1 cup Champagne vinegar or cider vinegar

¾ cup palm sugar
(or ½ cup plus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar)

1 teaspoon whole pink peppercorns

1 teaspoon whole allspice

1 pinch whole coriander

1 pinch whole black peppercorns

1 fresh bay leaf

1 cup jumbo dried apricots (or 2 fresh apricots, quartered and sliced)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. In bowl of stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, add ricotta, Parmigiano-Reggiano, and chèvre.
  3. Mix on low until combined, about 30 seconds. Crack whole egg and egg yolks into separate bowl, whisking gently with fork to combine. With motor running, add eggs to cheese mixture. Increase speed to medium and whip until thoroughly combined, about 45 to 60 seconds, occasionally stopping to scrape down sides of bowl. Chef Note: Be careful not to overwhip or cheese may break.
  4. Turn off mixer and fold in herbs and lemon zest. Season with salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste. Spoon into a 1-quart ovenproof ramekin or soufflé dish (about 3-inches deep). Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until sides are bubbling and center starts to brown. Remove from oven and drizzle with oil. Garnish with pickled apricots and serve immediately.

Pickled Apricots

  1. Combine vinegar and sugar in small saucepan and bring to boil over medium heat, stirring to dissolve sugar. Remove from heat, add spices and bay leaf, and allow to steep for 1 hour.
  2. Meanwhile, slice apricots into thin strips and add to nonreactive bowl or jar. Return pickling liquid to quick boil and immediately pour over sliced apricots. Let sit room temperature for 1 to 2 hours, then cover and refrigerate.

Chef Note: These are best used after 3 days—allowing sugars from the fruit to marry with the pickling liquid—and will last in refrigerator for up to 3 weeks.

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