Photo by by Annaliese Bischoff
Provenance of Dish
This recipe is inspired by Tuscan chef, Alessandro Piccinini, who taught me how to make a plain ricotta soufflé. Unlike a soufflé though, which is best served immediately, this recipe seems to get better resting over a little time to allow the subtle delicate mushroom flavor to mingle and bloom. I have created both a vegetarian version with zucchini and one that is non-vegetarian with German speck. I like both of these equally.
2 farm fresh eggs, room temperature
1 ¾ cups of fresh ricotta
2 tablespoon sliced scallions, divided
a few glugs of extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons diced shallot
1½ cup (or so) of oyster mushrooms, thinly sliced
¼ teaspoon of saffron threads
2 ounces of white wine
Kosher salt, to taste
fresh ground black pepper, to taste
6 slices of mandolin-thin zucchini or German speck (to measure about 1” by 8”)
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro, optional
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
Whisk the eggs in a bowl until fluffy and then incorporate the ricotta. Stir in 1 tablespoon of the scallions. Set aside.
Heat a little olive oil in a frying pan with medium heat and then add the shallot. Cook until softened.
Add the sliced mushrooms and cook until the volume reduces.
Turn up the heat and stir in the saffron. Then pour in the wine and cook until it evaporates. Season with salt and pepper. Take off heat and let cool a few minutes.
Stir the slightly cooled mushroom mixture into the ricotta mixture.
Line 6 ramekins with parchment paper. Place the zucchini or speck around the sides. (If your slices are not 8 inches long, you can piece bits together).
Divide and spoon the mushroom-ricotta mix into the lined ramekins.
Bake until golden brown (about 30 minutes).
Serve warm with scallion and cilantro garnish.