I chose this Homemade Ricotta and Pea Tart to make this month for my Secret Recipe Club assignment. With a base of crisp puff pastry and topped with homemade ricotta, peas and herbs, it is a recipe that is just as good to make for guests as it is to enjoy with your family.
This month my assignment was the blog, Well Dined, written by Sarah, a stay at home foodie wife. As soon as I received my assignment I was excited as Sarah had my blog last month and I’d enjoyed reading her post about making my bulgogi so I was delighted to have the opportunity to make one of her recipes.
I looked at quite a lot of recipes but as so often happens it was the very first one I checked that I ended up making. I think it was partly the fact that I really wanted to make my own ricotta but mainly that her tart looked and sounded so zesty and green. It was full of fresh herbs, peas, lemon and ricotta. I wanted a slice and the only way I was going to get one was to make it myself!
Of course, I was spoilt for choice by so many more recipes as well. I absolutely love eating pastry and I have never even considered the idea of making a crustless quiche before but I was still tempted by her Quinoa and Kale Crustless Quiche. Another great healthy weeknight meal would be her Poached Chicken with Balsamic Roasted Vegetables. So simple but really tasty. I also like the sound of the Lamb Stew with dried plums. It’s full of veggies as well as a lovely mix of North African spices. It might take a bit longer to make but I’m sure the final dish would be worth it.
I have to admit now that I have had a cheesemaking kit sitting in the back of one of my cupboards for quite some time. A whole 2 years I’m ashamed to say. I was given it for my birthday just before Master Spice was born and with all the preoccupations of looking after a new baby and a toddler it somehow got a bit forgotten about.
Well, recently when I was tidying out my cupboards I found it again and promised myself to use it soon. So when I saw that this recipe used homemade ricotta, I knew I could make excuses no longer!
I will write more about it in another post as I am planning to make some more cheese as well but I will just say that it was so easy it really should not have taken me two years to use.
As well as the chance to make homemade ricotta, what really caught my attention with this recipe was how green and fresh the topping looked. By itself ricotta is a bit plain. It needs something to give it some flavour and as soon as the peas, lemon juice and herbs were added it was absolutely delicious. I didn’t use all of the ricotta on the tart and the leftovers made a fantastic dip for celery, cucumber and carrot sticks. And even spread on toast for breakfast!
And what if you’re too lazy, time-pressed or, controversially, feel you have better things to do with your time than making cheese? Well, you could just buy a tub from the supermarket. It would just be 45p more expensive (based on Tesco prices) than the 2 pints of milk I made this with! But seriously, don’t feel you have to make your own ricotta to make this. Although if you want to, follow the instructions on Sarah’s blog.
A tasty ricotta and pea tart with lemon and fresh herbs.
- 320g puff pastry (I used ready rolled)
- 250g ricotta
- 240g peas (I used defrosted but uncooked frozen peas)
- 2 tbsp chopped fresh basil
- 2 tbsp chopped fresh mint
- Juice of 1 lemon
- Black pepper
- Score a rectangle into the puff pastry to make a border about 2cm inside from the outside edge.
- Bake in the oven at 200C for 10 minutes. Push the middle of the tart down and return to the oven for 5 minutes.
- Put the ricotta, half the peas, half the basil, half the mint, the lemon juice and a little black pepper in the food processor. Blitz until fairly smooth.
- Spread the ricotta mixture onto the tart.
- Mix the remaining peas and herbs together. Scatter on top of the tart.
This tart is perfect for spring so I am linking it to Cooking with Herbs at Lavender and Lovage and to Eat Your Greens, hosted this month by The Veg Hog and on alternate months by Allotment 2 Kitchen. I am also linking to Tasty Tuesdays at Honest Mum, Meat Free Mondays at Tinned Tomatoes, Cook Blog Share, hosted this week by Snap Happy Bakes and Fiesta Friday hosted by Julie @ Hostess At Heart and Ashley @ Too Zesty .