Sunday, February 28, 2010

Spinach Pesto

Last week I found a recipe for homemade ricotta as I was surfing the net.  I had never heard of making ricotta at home before but I used to make yogurt all the time.  After looking at the recipe I decided it looked easy enough.  I would definitely have to try it.  I used 1% milk as I wanted a lower fat version and it turned out great.  It was delicious!   I had just happened to watch a show on Food Network a day or two before that used ricotta in the recipe and decided to pear up the two and make the dish with the homemade ricotta.  The recipe on Food Network was by Sunny Anderson called Ricotta Ravioli with Spinach Pesto.  You can check it out if you desire.  I made the ricotta one day and the next used it to make the ravioli.  I did make some changes to the ravioli filling that I thought we would like better.  I kept out the lemon zest and added some of the pesto to the filling to add in some flavor.  I thought the ravioli were quite time consuming even though I used wonton wrappers which did save some time. But it was very good.  Like a restaurant meal if I must say so myself.  I was impressed.   I also changed the pesto just a bit, and have decided to post this part of the recipe as it was my favorite part.  It could be used on pasta, fish, chicken as a spread on toasted baguette slices etc.   Here is my version:

Spinach Pesto

·         4 cups spinach, loosely packed
·         1 clove garlic
·         1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
·         1/2 cup olive oil
1     3/4 cup toasted hickory nuts, toasted

1 lime,  juiced

To make the spinach pesto:

In a food processor, combine remaining 3/4 cup hazelnuts, lime juice, spinach, garlic, parmesan, olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste and puree until smooth.

The original recipe called for toasted hazelnuts, but I didn't have any in the house so substituted the hickory nuts, didn't have a lemon so used a lime.

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