Hello, Spring! I am so glad that you have finally come to stay! I'd like to welcome you with this lovely little tart made with fresh peas, creamy homemade ricotta, scallions, herbs, and lemon. Please stick around for a bit.
Well, Spring, I know that fresh English peas are kind of your thing, so I used them two ways just for you! I pureed some peas and ricotta together with lemon juice, mint, and basil to make a creamy spread. Then I mixed some whole peas with scallions, more mint and basil, and lemon zest.
I baked some puff pastry until golden, puffed, and crispy; then I spread the creamy ricotta mixture over the top; and sprinkled the whole pea mixture over that. Look at all that green!
So please, Spring, stay around for a bit - I missed you! And I need a few more months before I'm ready for the heat of Summer.
PS - I had some leftover ricotta, so I made some roasted grapes with thyme to go with it. I know they aren't really in season right now, but they are so good that I hope you will forgive me.
Pea and Ricotta Tart
Adapted from Kid Cultivation
8x10-inch rectangle of puff pastry, thawed
2 cups peas, fresh or frozen but thawed
1 cup ricotta cheese (recipe below)
3 tbsp mint, coarsely chopped
3 tbsp basil, coarsely chopped
1 lemon, zest and juice
1/2 cup sliced scallion greens
salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 400 deg F. Place the puff pastry on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Score a smaller rectangle into the pastry with a sharp knife, making a 1-inch border. Do not cut all the way through to the bottom. Bake for 10-13 minutes until puffy. Remove from oven. Use a spatula to compress the puff pastry inside the border and return to oven for 10-13 minutes more. Remove when golden brown and crisping at the edges. Set aside to cool.
In a food processor, combine half the peas, all the ricotta, half the mint, half the basil, and the lemon juice. Process to make a thick puree. Season with salt and pepper.
In a separate bowl combine the remaining peas, mint, basil, lemon zest, and scallions. Season with salt and pepper.
Spread the ricotta mixture over the puff pastry. Top with the pea and herb mixture. Garnish with additional mint and basil leaves if desired. Cut into squares and serve immediately.
from Ina Garten
makes about 2 cups
4 cups whole milk
2 cups heavy cream
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3 tablespoons good white wine vinegar
Set a large sieve over a deep bowl. Dampen 2 layers of cheesecloth with water and line the sieve with the cheesecloth.
Pour the milk and cream into a large pot. Stir in the salt. Bring to a full boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Turn off the heat and stir in the vinegar. Allow the mixture to stand for 1 minute until it curdles. It will separate into thick parts (the curds) and milky parts (the whey).
Pour the mixture into the cheesecloth-lined sieve and allow it to drain into the bowl at room temperature for 20 to 25 minutes, occasionally discarding the liquid that collects in the bowl. The longer you let the mixture drain, the thicker the ricotta. (I like mine on the softer side, Ina likes hers thicker.) Transfer the ricotta to a bowl, discarding the cheesecloth and any remaining whey. Use immediately or cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate. The ricotta will keep refrigerated for 4 to 5 days.
One Year Ago - Barely Risotto with Asparagus (2 ways)
Two Years Ago - Orzo Salad with Zucchini and Feta; Orzo in Mascarpone Sauce with Peas and Chives
Three Years Ago - Spring Shells and Cheese; Zucchini Pie