Fried ricotta cheese
Nonna Galasso loved the fresh ricotta cheese that she bought from the Broadway Market in Buffalo, New York. It was freshly made and firm with a dry, not watery, texture. She pan-fried clumps of it in a little olive oil and sprinkled the top with butcher’s coarse black pepper. The taste? Creamy and soothing.
Portions: Serves 4
- 1 pound very firm fresh ricotta cheese
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon butcher’s black pepper, plus more for sprinkling
- 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra to pass Eight
- ½-inch-thick slices country baguette
Place the ricotta cheese in a bowl; add the salt and butcher’s pepper and gently fold into the cheese. Set aside. Heat 3 tablespoons of the olive oil in a medium sauté pan and brown the bread slices on both sides. As they brown transfer them to a platter and set aside. Heat the remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil in the same pan and, using a ¼-cup measure, drop 8 clumps of the cheese into the pan, spacing them apart. Cook over medium high heat until the cheese begins to brown along the edges. Using two small spatulas, gently turn them over and brown the other side. As they brown, place each one on top of a bread slice. Sprinkle a few grains of butcher’s pepper over the top of each one and serve two per person. Pass extra virgin olive oil to drizzle on top. Roasted red peppers are also delicious served on top of each one.