Happy birthday to us!
We’ve been cheesing it for a year now, and we have been celebrating.
So today we bring to you not one, not two, not three, but four recipes to put together an entire scrumptious meal orbiting around cheese.
We begin with an appetiser, featuring Feta cheese and ground walnuts, which technically make these little taste-bomb healthy. Almost. Be that as it may, these were absolutely, totally, like, awesome.
Our first course starred creamy pasta with Ricotta, paired with the freshness of lemon. The sheer simplicity of this dish belies the wonderful taste, which manages to transport you straight back into summer.
We chose chicken for our main course, and of course Parmesan, which simply had to make the cut. Dried tomatoes and basil rounded up this lovely, comforting one-skillet dish. We do, however, apologise for the pictures, but this was so good we literally forgot to take any more… You’ll just have to trust us on this one. Have we ever led you astray? 🙂
And last, but indeed not least, you cannot have a birthday without a cake. A cheesecake, of course. Scroll down and find out more about this little crowning jewel of today’s feast…
How can you say no?
Walnut Feta Cookies
Servings: about 40 cookies
Prep time: 20 minutes
You will need:
- 40 g ground or chopped walnuts
- 120 g, or 1/2 cup flour
- 120 g butter
- 120 g feta cheese
- salt and pepper
Let’s start out with the walnut. If you couldn’t find them ground, you can use a pestle and mortar to do the job. (We did 🙂 )
In a large bowl, mix all the ingredients until you obtain a homogeneous dough, then roll it out to a thickness of roughly 1,5 cm.
Cut them out in any desired shape. We used a round cutter, but any shape will do, really.
Place on a greased or lined cookie sheet. Leave a little space between them, but not much is needed, since they really don’t grow at all. You can brush them them with a slightly beaten egg, or even milk, at this point, but this really isn’t necessary.
Place in a low oven and bake for about 10 minutes, or until light golden.
Lemon Ricotta Pasta
Prep time: 10 minutes (seriously)
You will need:
- 350gr short pasta
- 200gr fresh Ricotta cheese
- the zest of 1 lemon
- 2 teaspoons dried, or 10 leaves fresh basil
- grated Parmesan cheese, to garnish
Cook the pasta as per package instructions.
Reserve two cups of pasta water before draining.
Meanwhile, beat together the cheese, lemon zest and basil until thoroughly combined.
Thin out with pasta water until fairly liquid, but still creamy. Return the drained pasta to the pot and mix in the Ricotta mixture.
Serve garnished with Parmesan and a few basil leaves.
Creamy Parmesan Basil Chicken
Prep time: 30 mintues
You will need:
- 4 large chicken breasts
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1/4 bread crumbs
- olive oil to cook the chicken
- 1/2 cup chicken broth
- 1 cup cream
- 1/3 cup minced dried tomatoes
- 1/4 cup fresh basil, or 2 teaspoons dried
- 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons cream cheese
- salt and pepper to taste
Preheat a large skillet on low heat with the olive oil. Salt and pepper both side of the chicken breasts. Dip in the milk, then coat with bread crumbs and place in the pan. Cook for about 5 to 8 minutes on each side, or until cooked through (times may vary here depending on the thickness of the breast).
Remove from the pan, and add the broth to the same pan. When it boils, stir in cream and tomatoes and give it a good stir. Add the remaining ingredients and give it a few minutes to cook through.
Return the chicken to the pan.
Eat up. 🙂
Raspberry White Chocolate Cheesecake
Prep time: 30 minutes, plus 50 minutes baking time, plus 2 hours chilling
You will need:
For the cheesecake:
- 1 cup shortbread cookies, crumbled
- 3 tablespoons ground almonds
- 1/4 cup melted butter
- 4 tablespoons cream cheese
- 3/4 cup white chocolate, cut into squares and melted
- 2/3 cup sugar (optional; I didn’t think it was necessary)
- 2/3 cup sour cream
- 3 eggs
For the raspberry sauce:
- 1 1/4 cup raspberry jam
- 1 cup fresh or frozen raspberries
Combine the crushed cookies with the ground almonds.
Mix in the melted butter until it forms a crumbly paste. Press into the bottom of a greased pan.
Combine the cream cheese with the melted chocolate.
Add the sour cream, sugar and eggs. Pour on top of the cookie crust.
Bake on medium high for 30 to 45 minutes or until golden brown and centre is still slightly wobbly, but set. It will firm up as it cools.
Place in the fridge to cool for at least 2 hours, ideally overnight.
Meanwhile, place the raspberry jam in a small sauce pan over medium heat until it melts down. Add the raspberries and bring to a simmer. Cover and chill until serving time.
Spoon the raspberry sauce over the cheesecake slices as you serve.