A simple sauce of prepared pesto and ricotta cheese makes a moist and flavorful coating for fish, pasta, or roasted vegetables
If you follow me on Facebook, you may have seen the photos of my first cheese-making efforts. I got a gallon of milk marked down and made 2 balls of mozzarella with a cheese making kit I bought from Standing Stone Farms. With the leftover whey (boy howdy there's a lot of whey) I made a bonus batch of ricotta cheese.
There was still a lot of whey leftover after making the ricotta and mozzarella, and I've been experimenting with it. So far whey-soaked oven oatcake is a hit, and pizza crust using whey instead of water is also a winner. Details to come.Here's the thing, though--normally I'll use ricotta in something hearty, like my Quadruple Roasted Mock Lasagna. This summer has been gloriously--and unusually--cool, but not cool enough for that. I decided to use up the very last cubes of last fall's pestopalooza with the ricotta cheese, and play around.
NOTE: I created this recipe to be gluten free through my choice of ingredients. Check labels to confirm that your products are also gluten free. Good sources for determining that your products are gluten free can be found here:
Baked Swai with Ricotta and Pesto (serves 2)
1/3 cup ricotta cheese
1/3 cup prepared pesto (here's how I make and put up mine)
1 Swai fillet (mine was mostly thawed)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. In a small bowl combine ricotta and pesto. Coat the fillet (both sides) with the mixture. Bake in parchment-lined pan about 20 minutes until fish flakes easily with your fork.
Possible sides to accompany this fish (I'd flip the photo over to share the sides in the order shown, but it just looks weird upside down):
1. Ricotta and Pesto Pasta (serves 2-3)
6 ounces dried shaped pasta (use gluten free pasta as needed)
1/4 cup ricotta cheese
1/4 cup prepared pesto
Prepare pasta according to package directions, saving a bit of pasta water when you drain it. Combine pesto and ricotta in a small bowl. Toss pasta with pesto in the pasta pot (add a bit of pasta water if you'd like a saucier side dish). Easily scalable for the amount of folks you wish to feed.
2. Ricotta and Pesto Roasted Summer Squash (serves 3)
1/2 cup ricotta cheese
1/4 cup prepared pesto (yes, this time I used more ricotta, not equal amounts)
2 medium sized yellow summer squash (would work with zucchini, eggplant, carrot, kohlrabi and ?)
2 teaspoons olive oil
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Combine ricotta and pesto in a small bowl. Slice squash in half lengthwise, then into half circles. In a large bowl, toss the squash with olive oil then roast on a rimmed baking sheet for 10 minutes. Stir. Roast another 10 minutes. If the squash is starting to brown, toss with the ricotta-pesto mixture (I re-used the large bowl for this), return to the rimmed baking sheet, and broil for 3-5 minutes until browned and bubbly. If the squash isn't quite there yet, give it a stir and another 10 minutes roasting before switching over to broil and tossing with the ricotta-pesto mixture.