Some recipes just sing out to us. This ricotta bake is one of those recipes.
It has absolutely everything that makes a perfect Hurry The Food Up recipe. Before I head into just how nutritious it is, I want to talk about my favourite thing – the speed. The PURE SPEEEEEED!
It’s such a quick recipe – so quick it surprises me every time. Literally just FIVE MINUTES of throwing everything together and into the oven it goes.
That’s it, no more to do. Sit back and put your feet up. Or do a workout. Or look after the kids. Or get some work done. Do whatever it is you have to do – but know that the food is taken care of.
Ricotta Bake – open, open, splat
That pretty much sums up the instructions. Grab your ingredients, flop them into a baking dish and off they go. This is one of those recipes where the sum is so much better than its parts.
Baked ricotta, when mixed with the right herbs and accompaniments is not only tasty, it’s ridiculously nutritious.
Ricotta – why we love you so
Knowing we’re eating something that’s tasty and easy is all well and good – but we’ve got to take care of our nutrition if we want the most from life. And a ricotta bake takes care of the nutrition.
Just check out a few of the ingredients.
Ricotta – mostly made from whey and a great source of protein.
Lentils – also high in protein, but particularly great in terms of fibre. And fibre rocks.
Spinach – I’m the first to admit I’m not a massive fan – until it’s done right. And by that I mean that I can’t really taste it! That’s when I love spinach.
Basil and tomatoes – one of my favourite combos. The sweet bite of a tomato mixed with a little ricotta and finished with a touch of basil is an excellent addition to any meal, in my humble opinion.
And finally did I say this only takes 5 MINUTES to prep?! How great is that? Just sit back and let the oven do the rest 😎
- 3 spring onions
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- ½ lemon (juiced and zested)
- 2 tbsp water
- ¼ cup basil, fresh
- ¼ cup dill, fresh
- 1 cup brown lentils, cooked (1 cup = 1 can, roughly 250g after draining)
- 1 cup spinach (frozen also works)
- 1 pack ricotta (250g / 9oz)
- 12 cherry tomatoes (on the vine if possible)
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 200°C/390°F
- Chop or rip the basil and dill.
- Mix half the olive oil with the lemon zest and juice, add half the herbs, salt and pepper in a large mixing bowl. Chop the spring onions and add to the bowl with the lentils, spinach and 2 tbsp water.
- Layer it onto a roasting dish.
- Put the ricotta in the centre, on the top.
- Wash the tomatoes and put them around the ricotta.
- Drizzle the rest of the olive oil over the ricotta and add some more salt and pepper.
- Cook in the oven for 25-30 minutes until ricotta is firm and lightly browned.
- Serve in bowls with the lentils on bottom and creamy ricotta on top. Lay the tomatoes to the side.
- Garnish with the rest of the herbs.
Optional – no oil:
- You can cut out the oil completely from this recipe. In place of the oil use vegetable broth – about 50ml to start with, adding a little more if necessary. Mix it in with the lentils before the dish goes into the oven.