Sunday, February 04, 2007

Sformato di spinaci e dolce di ricotta

I mentioned I tried a few recipes from 'Cucina di tradizione del Piemonte n.2' for the weekend cookbook challenge. So I took the occasion of a Sunday get-together with many friends to prepare two more recipes taken from that book: a spinach 'sformato' (sformato is something that you bake and it's not sweet, and has some sort of self sustaining shape (forma=shape, in Italian) and a ricotta dessert.

Sformato di spinaci / Spinach sformato

1 lb spinach
1/2 lb besciamella
2 tbsp grated parmigiano
2 tbsp salt
4 eggs
Prepare a spinach puree: boil the spinach, puree them, and mix the besciamella with them. Besciamella is the white sauce I already gave the recipe for here. Add the parmigiano, salt, and the eggs, beaten. Pour in a buttered and floured pan and cook in the oven in a double boiler at 350 F for ~45 min (until a knife comes out dry from it). When cold you can 'sformarlo' (take it out of its baking pan) on a serving dish. Serve it warm. It's really good! I'd suggest it also for people who don't usually like vegetables very much.

If you 'read more' you'll find the ricotta dessert.

Dolce di ricotta / Ricotta dessert / Torta 'd seirass (Piemontese!)

I was quite curious about how this dessert would come out. Even if it's in this traditional Piemontese cookbook, I never had it before.
8 eggs
1/2 lb ricotta
1/2 lb powder sugar
1 1/2 cup almond flour
1 3/4 cup butter
Separate the yolks from the eggs. Beat the yolks with the sugar, add the ricotta, the butter, softened, and the almond flour. Beat the whites till stiff and mix together with the other ingriedents. Pour some rum in the serving pan, and the mixture of all the ingredients on top. Refrigerate for at least two hours before serving.

It turned out to have a good flavor but a funny consistency. I refrigerated it for ~6 hours, and it was half kind of solid and half liquid (the bottom part). So we when served it, in cups, it was a little bit like an 'ile flotant'. I must admit that I cut quite a bit on the butter, and most of all, the recipe didn't specify how much rum to put - and since I like it, I may have put too much (~1/2 cup?).. this was probably the reason for the fact that not all the dessert was dense.. but the taste was very good. A friend of mine added some coffee liquor to it, and it was a nice idea too :)

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