Zucchini Ricotta Cheesecake from 101 Cookbooks
To shred the zucchini use a box grater - most micro planes are too fine, you want shredded zucchini, not mush. Feel free to play around with the "add-in" ingredients - for example, use whatever chopped herbs you like. I had dill on hand, and I like how it tastes with summer squash, so dill it was. I suspect anything from chopped olives, sun-dried tomatoes, or chives, to spices, chopped spinach, or corn could work here. Also, when I have the time and inclination I'll drain the ricotta through cheesecloth to get even more moisture out of the cake, but to be honest, most times I won't bother. Lastly, I use a spring form pan here, but you could use an equivalent baking dish or deep tart pan as well.
2 cups zucchini, unpeeled & grated
1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
2 1/2 cups ricotta cheese
1/2 cup freshly shredded Parmesan cheese
2 shallots, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1/4 cup fresh dill, chopped
zest of one lemon
2 large eggs, well beaten
1/3 cup goat cheese, crumbled
drizzle of olive oil
Preheat oven to 325F degrees, racks the middle. Butter/oil a 7-inch spring form pan.
In a strainer, toss the shredded zucchini with the salt and let sit for ten minutes. Now aggressively squeeze and press out as much moisture as you can. Set aside.
In the meantime, combine the ricotta cheese, Parmesan cheese, shallots, garlic, dill and lemon zest in a medium bowl. Stir in the eggs and continue mixing until well combined. Now stir in the shredded zucchini. Fill the spring form pan with the ricotta mixture and place on a baking sheet. Place in the oven and bake for sixty minutes. If there is any moisture left on top of the cake at this point, carefully use a bit of paper towel to dab it off. Now sprinkle with the goat cheese and return to the oven for another 20 -30 minutes or until the goat cheese is melted and the cake barely jiggles in the center (it will set up more as it cools).
At this point, if the cake is baked and set, but the top isn't quite golden, I'll zap it with the broiler (just about a minute) to get a bit more color on top. Remove from the oven and let cool five minutes, then release the cake from its pan. Cool completely, serve at room temperature drizzled with a bit of olive oil and a few sprigs of dill.
101 Cookbooks http://www.101cookbooks.com/
After making it I disagree on 1 thing-8 Servings??? Right! I cut it small but it is still warm from the oven and may have to eat 3 more "servings" before the night is thru.
It was not hard to make but I will say it is vital to drain as much water out of the zucchini as your Wonder Woman muscles can. It was shocking to me how much water came out. I should have measured it but seemed to be more than a cup. The directions stated you could also drain the ricotta but I had no way to do that. I used chive instead of dill and that seemed fine. I also wasn't sure how much lemon zest to use but I zested the whole lemon and it has a terrific lemony flavor.
The longest part was waiting for it to cook 1 1/2 hours. I did have to broil it for a couple of minutes and the goat cheese didn't really melt but browned up beautifully as you can see on the top photo.