Prep 20 mins
Cook 0 mins
I decided to create this summery folly because I wanted a low-carb, savory "something" made with fresh ricotta cheese. While measuring, weighing, making notes, and putting it all into the processor, I thought, no, this kite ain't gonna fly … But when I tasted the end result before chilling, I found it delicious. It tastes mild, creamy, herby and moreish. The red sauce must have a slight bite and should be served sparingly. I should have made this in individual molds, but by the time I realised that would have looked nicest, it was too late and the pate was already chilling! The seasonings can be changed, for example by using only Tabasco, (more than I indicated), or use only black pepper. You can also cheat a little bit and add a tiny drop of green food colouring for a darker green. For the red sauce I used South African (chopped) peppadews (also known as piquanté peppers), but as that might not be easily available to you, you can cheat here, too, and use a store-bought salsa (puree it for a more sophisticated look). Or make your own red-pepper sauce with sweet bell peppers and tomato.
- 1 lb fresh ricotta cheese
- 1⁄2 cup fresh cream
- 1⁄2 cup parsley, roughly snipped, measure generously
- 2 -3 tablespoons pesto sauce (fresh or a good deli pesto)
- 1 cup pecorino cheese, roughly grated (or use any sharp hard cheese)
- 1 tablespoon lemon zest, finely grated (I used a green lemon)
- 2 teaspoons garlic, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon Tabasco sauce (I used the Chipotle Tabasco)
- 1⁄2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon salt, sea salt flakes
- 5 teaspoons gelatin, granules
- 1⁄4 cup chicken broth (or stock made with granules)
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 1⁄2 cup pecan halves or 1⁄2 cup walnuts
- 1 medium tomatoes, fully ripe, peeled and chopped
- 3 tablespoons red bell peppers, charred, peeled, chopped
- 1⁄2 teaspoon Tabasco sauce (or more, to taste)
- 1 pinch salt
- Have the ingredients at hand, and snip the parsley with scissors. When you measure it, press it into the cup lightly.
- Put all the ingredients up to and including the Tabasco in your processor. Process until smooth and pale green. You may have to scrape down the sides a couple of times.
- Leave the puree, and mix the broth/stock and lemon juice in a small pot. Sprinkle over the gelatine, and stir over medium heat until the gelatine dissolves. Do not cook!
- Cool to warm or luke-warm, then start the processor and pour in the gelatine. Puree well. Taste at this stage: ricotta is so fresh that I found it did need the extra salt.
- Oil a suitable small pie plate or small molds, and scrape in the puree. Neaten the top, decorate with the nut halves, cover with plastic wrap, and chill at least 6 hours or overnight.
- FOR THE SAUCE: I used chopped peppadews/piquante peppers, which come in a very tasty pickling liquid and needs no extra seasoning. So if using red bell peppers, spike it with a little hot sauce. You can even use a little vinaigrette dressing. Puree everything with a pinch of salt until a smooth sauce forms, about ¾ cup or 200 ml.
- Or puree a store-bought salsa!
- This will be great if served as a light lunch with well-chilled sauvignon blanc.