“Ooh, fancy” – it’s not. It’s really not – all you have to do here is insert cheese into a food processor and forget about some tomatoes for two hours, and that’s pretty much it. The tomatoes here are the star of the show, and rightly so considering you need to bathe them in a significant amount of expensive olive oil. The good news for any frugal fionas out there is that you can keep the oil and use it for things in the future – salad dressings, cooking other things, as a finishing oil – it’s oil; use it for things. The dark horse in this recipe are the breadcrumbs, which like most things are improved with butter, garlic, smoked paprika and lemon zest. It’s not a bad idea to make too much of these and keep them for later – they’ll keep in the fridge for a week or so before they start getting weird. And all sitting on warm toasty bread and a wave of smooth, creamy cheese. The diet starts Monday!!!!
(There are no little bullet points here because if you mess this up you deserve any and all misfortune that comes your way 😀 )
Confit Tomato & Whipped Ricotta
- 250 g Ricotta
- 1 whole Lemon
- Flaky Sea Salt
- Freshly Cracked Black Pepper
- 4 Slices Sourdough Bread
- 800 g Cherry Tomatoes
- 5 Cloves Garlic
- 10 Sprigs Fresh Thyme
- 200 ml Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 40 g Panko Breadcrumbs
- 1 tsp Smoked Paprika
- 1 Knob Butter
- Preheat your oven to 130c. Add your tomatoes to a deepish baking dish. Pour in enough extra virgin olive oil so that the oil is sitting around halfway up the tomatoes. Crack over some black pepper and add flaky salt, and add in 3 cloves of grated garlic and 8 fresh thyme sprigs – distribute evenly around the baking dish. Add the tomatoes to the oven and bake for 2 hours. Remove the baking dish from the oven and allow to cool.
- Melt a knob of butter in a small pan on medium heat. Add in the breadcrumbs and toast until they start to turn golden brown. Add in one tsp of smoked paprika, the zest of half a lemon and two grated cloves of garlic, and stir until fragrant. Remove from the heat and let cool.
- Remove the tomatoes from the oil and set aside. Strain the extra virgin olive oil through a sieve and keep for later – discard the solids.
- Put the ricotta into a food processor/blender. Add in a healthy pinch of flaky salt, a generous crack of black pepper, plus the zest of half a lemon. Blend for about one minute, until the texture of the ricotta has completely changed and is luxurious and smooth.
- Toast your sourdough slices on both sides. Once toasted, add 1 -2 tablespoons of whipped ricotta mixture to each slice and spread. Then, top with the confit tomatoes. Scatter breadcrumb mixture on top and enjoy.
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