Yes my friends- I may have been born in England, but my heart beats for Italy through and through! Which is why I made this cute little puff-pastry flag here this evening- for the occasion of the Gemany-Italy soccer match in the 2012 European cup this evening... and I am not even a soccer fan!
Living in Germany though, there has been no way to avoid the drama and expectations of this match- which is why I came up with this idea- just good and healthy fun in preparation for a fun evening of soccer. And wouldn't ya know it... Italy won! And I was a winner too with this little edible flag!
There really isn't much of a recipe to share- just a fun and cool idea and a few very simple ingredients. The base is simply puff pastry, which I baked "blind" in a preheated oven, at 350°F for 5-6 minutes until it began to brown slightly on top and puff up a little. That is no problem- just pat it down with a wooden spoon! By giving the padtry a head-start without the toppings, you give it a chance to bake down below a little better, so that it doesn't end up getting soggy from the toppings.
The cherry tomatoes were sliced thinly and spread out on the right hand third of the pastry... I sprinkled them with a little salt and pepper and a hint of nutmeg. The middle section I spreaded with frsh ricotta cheese that I whipped-up with a little honey, a little olive oil and some white pepper. There is no need to add salt, as I wouls be adding salted ricotta to the topping as soon as it was baked. So back into the oven it went for a further 3 minutes!
During those 5 minutes, I plucked some basil leaves and drizzled a little oil on them. I then added a little salt and rubbed them together until they changed color and darkened and began to develop their aroma. I fetched the pastry back out, patted the remaining end section down again and laid out the basil leaves... and after a final minute or two of the broiler, out it came for the last time... ready to be enjoyed!
I rolled mine up when I ate it- that way I got to enjoy all 3 flavors at the same! A real treat- and one that I am sure that you will enjoy too!