Zucchini Ricotta Cheesecake

This was a recipe that I have tried a couple of months ago, but I haven’t gotten around to blog about it! I found myself with about two cups of leftover shredded zucchini and tried to find a way to use them up. Then I saw this recipe on Heidi Swanson’s website, which quickly intrigued me. I like cheesecakes, but have never tried a savory kind.  I decided to pick up some ricotta cheese and decided to try this!

Ricotta Cheesecake

I don’t have the size of pan that she had recommended for the recipe, which I believe made the tart a lot thinner than what Heide would have intended. But I didn’t mind it thinner, since it’s a cheesecake. I really like the flavor, however I must have either used too much lemon zest, but it was too lemony for my taste. I would definitely try this again, since this is great recipe–but I will try it with a lot less lemon, and use a thicker pan.

DSC07031

Adapted from 101 Cookbooks

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 springform 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.

Serves 8.

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