It’s so easy and rewarding! The ricotta is almost sweet tasting on its own. I’ve made all my batches with whole milk, and am now going to try some with reduced fat milk and compare the two.
I made a small pan of lasagna with my ricotta, using a free form filling of ricotta, cooked spinach, some cooked bacon, an egg and parmasean.
While waiting for the lasagna to cook, I made a batch of orange ricotta fritters using this recipe found on epicurious. The resulting fritters are amazing and addictive! Sweet, slighty orangy in a way that makes you think of honey. Eggy, like dutch babies. Not too sweet! I recommend doubling the recipe though as these disappeared way to fast.
I don’t fry things very often, so when I have hot oil ina pan, my eye tends to linger on other fryable possibilities in my kitchen. Inspired by the simple orange ricotta fritter, I realized that my leftover lasagna filling was almost a savory version of this fritter- all it needed was a splash of flour and maybe more egg. The resulting fritters are just as good as the orange ones!
Slightly salty with a creamy cheese flavor, light, crisp, and a finish of smoky bacon. This recipe is so simple and easy to adapt to many variations. Gruyere with onion would be an excellent next version to try.
Savory Spinach Bacon Ricotta Fritters
This recipe is an approximation on how to recreate my lasagna inspired fritters. The consistency of the dough is very similar to biscuit dough, a good texture to aim for when making these fried goodies.
In a pan over medium heat, crisp up one strip of bacon, cubed into tiny pieces. When crispy, remove with a slotted spoon to a paper bag or another absorbant surface to drain.
Cook two handfulls of raw spinach in the microwave till limp. Allow to cool slightly and squeeze out as much of the water from the cooked spinach as possible. Place the dried cooked spinach to a mixing bowl. Add the bacon bits, one egg, a pinch of salt, about 1 oz of grated parmesan and 1/2 cup of ricotta. Mix thoroughly. Add 1/3 cup of flour and mix the flour in only until just barely combined. The dough should be very thick, similar to a biscuit dough. Place the dough in the refigerator for 15 minutes. Preheat the oven to 375F.
Heat approximately 1 cup of vegetable oil in a high walled pan for pan frying the fritters. Through experimentation I found that cooking the fritters at a slightly lower temperature (275F with fritters already cooking in it) gave them time for the insides to cook with out overly browning the outer layer. Since these are to be cooked all the way through, as opposed to just cooking an outer layer, thorough cooking time is desired to prevent a too wet inside to your fritters.
Using a small scoop that dispenses about 1 Tbs, scoop rounds of batter into your oil. The oil should just barely sizzle around the dough. Using a dry fork, flip the fritters over so that they achieve an even golden coloring all the way around. My best batches of fritter took approximatley 10 minutes in the oil to reach golden brown. Scoop out the golden fritters, draining briefly and then popping on a baking sheet in the hot oven. Continue cooking your dough in this manner adding the finished fritters to the baking sheet in the oven. The oven cooking seems to drive off more of the cooking oil from the product, and ensures that the insides get heated to completion.
Remove the fritters from the oven and sprinkle with salt and enjoy.