Ricotta bruschetta

    Ricotta bruschetta

    1save
    55min


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    About this recipe: With a selection of Italian-style antipasto vegetables in your storecupboard, interesting light meals and snacks can be prepared in minutes, such as these tasty toasts topped with peppers and ricotta cheese. A salad of mixed leaves with cucumber and grapes is all that's needed to make a sustaining lunch.

    Ingredients
    Serves: 4 

    • 8 slices of sourdough bread, cut 1 cm (½ in) thick, about 300 g (10½ oz) in total
    • 250 g (8½ oz) ricotta cheese
    • 55 g (2 oz) stoned green olives, chopped
    • 3 tbsp chopped fresh mint
    • 150 g (5½ oz) antipasto peppers, well drained and roughly chopped
    • salt and pepper
    • fresh mint leaves to garnish
    • Leaf and grape salad
    • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
    • 1 tsp lemon juice
    • 170 g (6 oz) mixed salad leaves, such as baby spinach, Oak Leaf and rocket
    • ½ cucumber, sliced
    • 225 g (8 oz) seedless red or green grapes

    Method
    Prep:40min  ›  Cook:15min  ›  Ready in:55min 

    1. First make the salad dressing. Put the olive oil, lemon juice, and salt and pepper to taste in a salad bowl and whisk to mix. Set the bowl aside.
    2. Heat a large, ridged, cast-iron grill pan over a moderately high heat. Put in as many slices of bread as will fit in a single layer and toast them for about 2 minutes or until the bases are crisp and lightly marked with ridges. Turn the slices over and toast on the other side. Remove the slices. Toast the remaining slices in the same way.
    3. Put the ricotta cheese in a mixing bowl and add the olives and chopped mint. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Mix well together.
    4. Place a few pepper pieces on each slice of toast. Pile the ricotta mixture on top and garnish with mint leaves.
    5. Quickly whisk the dressing in the salad bowl, then add the salad leaves, sliced cucumber and grapes. Toss together, and serve with the bruschetta.

    Another idea

    Make a taleggio, tuna and mushroom topping for focaccia bread. Drain 1 can of tuna in spring water, about 200 g, and flake into a bowl. Add 100 g (3½ oz) well drained mixed antipasto peppers in oil, 100 g (3½ oz) well drained mixed antipasto mushrooms in oil and 2 tbsp chopped parsley. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir together until well blended. Cut 6 thick slices of focaccia bread, about 300 g (10½ oz) in total, then slice each in half horizontally. Toast the bread under a preheated hot grill for about 2 minutes on each side or until crisp. Spread the tuna mixture over the toasts, then top with 150 g (5½ oz) taleggio cheese, thinly sliced. Grill for 2½ minutes or until the cheese melts. Serve hot.

    Plus points

    Ricotta is an Italian cheese made from the whey left over from making other cheeses. It is similar to fromage frais in nutritional composition, although it has a higher protein and calcium content. * Olive oil is high in monounsaturated fat, which is thought to help in lowering high levels of cholesterol in the blood.

    Each serving provides

    A * C, calcium * B1, B6, E, folate, niacin, copper, iron, potassium, zinc

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