Photos: Greg and Trina
There's been a considerable build up of psychological damage around here lately with the whole Tongue Episode. And it sounds like I've even managed to spread some of the trauma to you all. Realizing this, I knew that a little epicurean comfort, a little soothing of the wounded culinary psyches was in order.
The remedy: sweet ricotta pastries made with homemade ricotta.
I had read that ricotta is made from the whey saved from making some other kind of cheese. I tried it that way and it didn't work. Nothing happened. There seemed to be not enough substance in the whey to curdle. ??? I also tried making it from milk and cream curdled with lemon juice . That way worked... beautifully.
The pastries are a combo of a couple of recipes: the pastry dough (and construction) is from this recipe but with a 6x portion of orange zest. There are certain ingredients with which I always, always follow the ancient wisdom, "If a little bit is good, an excess is better." Orange zest is one of them. Ginger is another. Freshly grated nutmeg...
The ricotta filling is from this recipe, but with about 2 tablespoons of orange zest, a ridiculous amount of freshly grated nutmeg (about half a nut), and a handful of mini chocolate chips (not melted) instead of the dates, pistachios and melted chocolate in the recipe. Had there been any candied ginger in the house, I would've finely chopped a little of that and put it in the filling as well.
Yum! Still, I'm getting the feeling that I'm not yet forgiven. But perhaps that's just a ploy for more penance pastries?
Oh, and as for the tongue... its second rendering -- shredded and used for tacos de lengua -- was much, much, MUCH more palatable than the slices that were tongue shaped and of tongue-y texture.