Sunday, December 23, 2012

jingle bells

The past two months have gone by in a hazy, crazy, daze.

I have been working a lot. A. Lot. I have been staying up late and waking up early. I have been eating badly and eating well. I've been boogying to 60s music in dirty clubs and sharing sophisticated meals in nice restaurants.

I've practised my poorly mispronounced French to every customer at the cafe I work at and have spent hours sorting through recipes and painstakingly copying and pasting images at my other job.

I've been forcing myself to run up and down stairs in the wee hours of the morning and, as a silly result of this, have spent many nights drearingly tired on my couch. 

I've been eating my lunch at my work desk and sneaking away in snippets of time to face the hoards to finish off my christmas shopping. 

I've been jogging in the bush near my house a lot. Alone. It's nice.
And although the air temperature is telling me it's summer, I sadly haven't been to the beach in months. 

These past few weeks I've been eating to live not living to eat, and because of this I haven't been able to enjoy cooking that much. But the other day I decided to emulate a recipe from the amazing chef Jenny at work and made this disgustingly addictive baked ricotta. It's amazing sliced up into summer salads, chucked into a sandwich with some hummus and falafels, eaten alongside some avocado, spinach and poached eggs in the morning, or even as part of an antipasti board with some olives and crackers. 

Preserved Lemon and Paprika Baked Ricotta 

700g fresh ricotta (from the deli - not from a tub)
3 preserved lemons
4 eggs
salt and pepper
handful of fresh parsley
1 1/2 cups grated parmesan cheese
smoked paprika

Combine the ricotta, eggs and parmesan cheese in a bowl. Chuck in the finely chopped parsley and preserved lemons - remove white pith and finely chop the lemon skin. 

Lightly oil a small, shallow baking tin. Dust the paprika all over the tin to coat the sides and bottom. Pour in the ricotta cheese mixture and sprinkle a generous layer of paprika over the top of the ricotta.

Bake in a moderate oven for about 30 minutes until golden and brown. Remove and set aside in a fridge to set over night before turning out and cutting into chunks to devour.

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