Focaccia + Roasted Tomatoes + Ricotta


Do you ever get stuck on a food and somehow can't manage to stop eating it?  Well, I've had pizza for what seems like many days in a row.  (And granola, too. See previous post.)  It started with a pizza restaurant down the street and has continued with this focaccia and it's leftovers.  

Use any type of flours you like but I have to say the rye really adds a great flavor and texture.   

Serves 4. 

Focaccia Pizza with Roasted Tomatoes + Fresh Ricotta

For the focaccia

1 packet yeast

1 1/4 cup very warm water

1 teaspoon sugar

2 cups rye flour

1 cup all purpose flour

1 tablespoon salt

1/8 cup + 1/4 cup olive oil

large handful fresh basil leaves, chopped


red chile flakes

grated hard cheese like pecorino, parmesan... 

6 plum tomatoes, cored and cut lengthwise

8 cremini mushrooms, sliced

for the ricotta

4 cups whole milk

1 1/4 cup heavy cream

1 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons lemon juice (about 1/2 lemon or less) 

For the focaccia:   Combine water, sugar and yeast in a mixing bowl and let sit a couple minutes.  There should be bubbles or foam which shows that the yeast is active and working.  Add flours, salt and 1/8 cup olive oil.  Mix to form a dough and knead for 10  minutes.  Transfer to an oiled bowl and lightly oil the dough to stop any dryness or crust from forming.   

Cover with plastic wrap and let rise for 2 hours.  It will double in size.  Stretch onto a baking sheet and let rest 20 minutes. Poke/dot dough's surface with fingers.  Pour remaining olive oil over dough.

Heat oven to 400.  Bake 25 minutes.  

Top with lots of ricotta then chopped roasted tomatoes, sautéed mushrooms, salt, chile flakes, fresh basil and grated hard cheese.  

Prepare ricotta while dough is rising.  Roast tomatoes at the same time your baking focaccia.  

For ricotta:  In a pot, combine milk, cream and salt over medium high heat.  Heat to 195 degrees (about 12-18 minutes).  Stir frequently.   

Stir in lemon juice and remove from heat. Let stand 5 minutes.  Milk will curdle.   

Pour everything into a colander lined with cheese cloth and let it drain for 20 minutes.  Transfer ricotta to a bowl and chill until ready to use.  

For tomatoes:  Toss tomatoes in a dash of olive oil, salt and pepper.  Roast 15 minutes, cut side down.  Remove from oven and chop.

 For the mushrooms:  Saute in a dash of olive oil over medium high heat, about 7 minutes.  


Citrus Ricotta Pancakes + Red Zinger Maple Syrup

Good Morning!  I could be a morning person for these pancakes.  Pick any small citrus you prefer like orange, lemon or lime.  The syrup uses Celestial Seasonings Red Zinger herbal tea of hibiscus and lemon.

Citrus Ricotta Pancakes

1/2 cup cake flour

1/2 cup whole wheat flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 tablespoon agave syrup

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1 cup ricotta

juice and zest of small citrus

2 eggs, seperated

2/3 cup milk

For the Pancakes:  Mix flours and baking soda and make a well in the center of the bowl.  Add agave, valinna, ricotta, citrus zest, juice, egg yolks and milk.  Stir to just combined.  In a seperate bowl whisk egg whites until light and foamy.  Fold into batter.  Drop small ladlefuls of batter onto hot griddle or pan.  Bubbles will show up on edges and then center when ready to flip.  Flip and cook  opposite side about 1 minute.  Serve with butter, fruit, jam and/or syrup.

Red Zinger Maple Syrup

1/2 cup water

2 red zinger tea bags

1 cup maple syrup

For the Syrup:  Brew 1/2 cup water with two tea bags.  Let brew 5-7 minutes then discard tea bags.  In a pan, combine maple syrup and tea.  Simmer until reduced and a maple syrup consistency.