Monday, May 9, 2011

Monday Munchies

Hey y'all, I'm finally back.  Between getting the phone line fixed and Mother's Day Weekend, I'm just now sitting down at my computer.
  I thought today I'd share the recipe I made for the kids' teachers last week for Teacher Appreciation Week.   I had some ricotta in the fridge I wanted to use up earlier in the week, so I made these awesome lemon muffins from Giada.  The kids LOVED them (and I did too), so I made them again, but added poppyseeds and baked them in loaf pans.  Then I just sliced them in thick slices and wrapped them up, coffeehouse style.  This bread is great because it's not too sweet but definitely very tasty.  It's excellent warmed just a little with a slather of butter.  And since I upped their nutrition a little by using whole wheat flour and cutting back on the sugars, I didn't figure that butter was all that bad!  ;)
I used my Silhouette to make labels for each gift.  The back was the same scalloped circle but said Thanks for being my teacher.  I couldn't come up with anything cute at 11:30 p.m.!  
So here's the recipe (with my changes in blue)...

Nonna's Lemon Ricotta Biscuits

From Giada de Laurentiis at Food Network


I doubled the the recipe to make 2 loaves.
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour ( I used half ap flour and half whole wheat flour)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup plus 1 teaspoon sugar or more as needed for sprinkling (I used about a cup and a half and used turbinado sugar for sprinkling--about a tablespoon or so, I didn't measure)
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest (from 2 lemons)  (I used 1 lemon, I don't have a nice zester and I was lazy!)
  • 1 cup whole-milk ricotta cheese  (I used part-skim milk ricotta)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/3 cup thinly sliced almonds  (I left these out since some people don't like nuts)


Line 12 muffin cups with paper liners. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  (I used 2 loaf pans sprayed with Baker's Joy)
Whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl to blend. Using an electric mixer, beat 1 cup sugar, butter, and lemon zest in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Beat in the ricotta. Beat in the egg, lemon juice, and almond extract. Add the dry ingredients and stir just until blended (the batter will be thick and fluffy).
Divide the batter among the prepared muffin cups. Sprinkle the almonds and then the remaining 1 teaspoon of sugar over the muffins. Bake until the muffins just become pale golden on top, about 20 minutes. (I baked my loaves for about an hour.) Cool slightly. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Like I said, these were delicious, so if you're in the mood from something light and yummy, give this a try!!

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