Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Bitter, Sweet, Savory...and Twisted

Pasticcini Salati di Fillo con Ricotta, Fave, Menta, Limone & Miele
Savory Filo Pastries with Ricotta, Fava Beans, Mint, Lemon & Honey


I love to try out new ideas, I love to eat good food... And I love most of all to do something different and either irritate or wow people... Never to be boring! Life is too short to eat everyday food!

As is ALWAYS the case, being single, if you ever buy anything like a roll of pizza dough or puff pastry... Or in this case file pastry... There is always going to be too much in one packet. Which means you will have left-overs. And then you come up with nifty ideas, like this one, to put them to good use!


This was a double-whammy of a good idea, in that it used up both the remaining 6 sheets of filo pastry I had in the fridge from Sunday and the last of my fresh ricotta. Excellent! And it also turned out to be a great way to make use of the lovely, fresh fava beans I bought on Saturday...all to very yummy effect!

So, to make my 2 little tasty pastries, I needed: 6 sheets of fill pastry, 1 lemon, 1 onion, 4 tablespoons of fresh ricotta, 2-3 handfuls of fava beans, plenty of mint and some salt, pepper, olive oil and honey... And that's it!


And although this is a savory dish, what with the beans, onion, cheese, salt and pepper... It was the honey that made it special- it lifted the flavor and gave a great contrast to the tangy lemon... In short... It made these little pastries really terrific!


Shell the beans, also removing the pale "second skin" to leave only the sweet and tender beans themselves, finely chop the onion, either grate or chop the zest of half the lemon and cut a couple of nice, thick slices from the rest... And you are ready to go!


Put these ingredients into a small saucepan, add a good pinch of salt and enough boiling water to just about cover them and boil for 10-15 minutes until the water has basically evaporated away. In the meantime, turn on the oven to get it nice and hot and ready for action.

After 10-15 minutes, you will be left with perfectly cooked beans, soft and tender onion... And lots of wonderful aroma!

Remove the lemon slices and mint leaves and mash the beans down with a fork, ready to be added to the ricotta.


Add the beans, more freshly chopped mint and lemon zest, salt, pepper and olive oil and stir together thoroughly.


Lightly brush the film pastry with olive oil and then lay out 3 sheets. Spread relatively thinly and evenly with the ricotta filling- that couple of tablespoons that you have for each pastry should be enough... Trust me!

Now, quickly roll op the pastry and then whilst it is still soft and moist, shape it into a spiral and lay it directly onto a baking tray... And yes, move as quickly as you can as it does tend to dry out incredibly fast!


And of course... If the pastry DOEs happen to crumble a little... Like mine did here... Don't worry... That is what film pastry is all about, after all!

Bake at 180 C for 25-30 minutes until golden brown, beautiful... And delicious!


Whether you serve them hot or cold, give them at least 5 minutes to "rest" before you lift them from the baking tray, just long enough for the ricotta to settle a little, as it is rather soft and fragile immediately after coming out of the oven.


And that little drizzle of honey, really makes all the difference... So try it! You'll like it!


Beautiful, simple, different and delicious as always! Don't hate me! Thank me and go make this for yourselves... That's what this whole website is all about! And most of all... Share... And enjoy!

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