Friday, May 20, 2005

Sugar High Friday - Baked Ricotta Puddings with Lemon Syrup



I'm still scurrying to catch up with things at work and home since my return from vacation, so though I do remember seeing the SHF announcement some time earlier, it wasn't until today I realized - it's today! But with such a great theme (citrus) and Alice hosting it, I just had to participate.

I knew I would make something lemon - I just made one cookie recipe and will be making another in a couple of days and each uses the zest of two lemons. That means I've got some lemon juice to use up! I had recently noticed Lyn's recipe for ricotta cheese on her blog, Lex Culinaria, and was curious to try it. Lemon and ricotta seemed like a good match, so I googled around until I found this recipe for Baked Ricotta Puddings with Lemon Syrup. Perfect!

Making the ricotta was easy, though it took me over an hour to bring the milk to the proper temperature. I was also ill-equipped to remove the curds from the pot. I didn't have a large slotted spoon and tried to make due with a small strainer (which got clogged by the cheese) and a small slotted spoon (slow going). In the end though all worked out and the cheese was wonderful. It smelled and tasted fresh and rich. I used all but a spoonful of it in these puddings, so I'd love to make it again and try it in lasagna or something similar.

The pudding went together easily. The recipe has a typo that makes it a little confusing - just above the list of ingredients it says "Serves: 4", but in the instructions it says to prepare 6 ramekins. Based on the size of the ramekins (150 ml), it appears that the correct number of servings is 6. I used regular granulated sugar in both the puddings and the lemon syrup and I used 3 large eggs in the puddings since my grocery store had no medium eggs. I boiled the syrup 5 minutes, but maybe I should have boiled it longer. Once I added the lemon juice, the syrup was very thin. It does not resemble the syrup shown in the photo that accompanies the recipe at all. I expect the difference in color is due to the fact that I used regular white sugar, but the syrup in that photo is also very thick.

Even if my syrup is thin, it is sweet and very lemony and a perfect accompaniment to the puddings. I ate one warm and really enjoyed it. The recipe says that they can also be served chilled. I imagine this recipe would also be good with other citrus juices substituted for the lemon.

11 comments:

chronicler said...

Okay, now I have another reason to love ricotta! This looks really good, the toasted almonds are just the right touch!

Santos said...

i second chronicler! if i had access to red currants, i'd add that for a beautiful summer pudding.

Cathy said...

Hi chronicler - Thanks, after having my first cannoli in Sicily, I may be becoming a big ricotta fan myself!

Hi Santos! You know, I've never tasted fresh currants - it sounds good though.

Reid said...

Hi Cathy,

This looks really good and I think some fresh blueberries or raspberries would taste quite nice with the lemony ricotta.

BTW...is blueberry season over already?

Cathy said...

Hi Reid! Yes, those would be good. No - blueberry season hasn't started yet. Mine usually ripen in late June - early July. They can be had for a steep price, but they're in little half pint boxes and I think they're imported.

I'm not using the bird net this year, so I'm not sure how much I'll be picking from my bush. Guess I need to prune my bush way back so that I can safely fit a bird net around it. Don't want any more incidents like last year!

Nic said...

Looks good, Cathy. I personally hate trying to reduce syrups. For me, either they don't get thick enough or I manage to scorch them. I try to stay on the thin side to play it safe. And as long as it tastes good, who cares!

Cathy said...

Hi Nic - thanks! I haven't had much experience reducing syrups, but I can imagine they could easily turn into a sticky mess. I agree though - taste is what really matters!

Alice said...

Cathy, it looks so yummy. Making the ricotta yourself...what a challenge for this event. Thanks for a wonderful entry, as usual.

Cathy said...

Hi Alice - thanks! Thank you for hosting this SHF - you did a fantastic job with the round-up!

Jennifer said...

WOW. I'm impressed - nothing like making your ENTIRE dish from scratch, and for SHF to boot! I think I might have to try out this ricotta-making-thing sometime soon. Great job and great looking puddings!

Cathy said...

Hi Jennifer - thanks! Making the ricotta was easy - you should give it a try!