THIS IS ONE OF THE BEST THINGS EVER! Sorry for shouting but seeeeeriously, you must make these. Look at these little spinach and ricotta dumplings, nestling in a lake of tomato sauce and topped with shaved parmesan. I’ve never felt so fancy in my life! My next dinner party is definitely going to feature these. They’d make a great vegetarian appetiser, or add an extra one each and some bread, and you’ve got yourself a main meal. Or just eat the entire tray and you’ve got yourself a Friday night.
Don’t let the word ‘dumplings’ put you off, by the way. These are light and fluffy; not at all heavy. If I didn’t think it sounded so prissy I would have called them ‘spinach and ricotta clouds’, but I don’t think I could have forgiven myself. They’re also fairly low carb compared to most Italian food, which either means you can feel great that you’re eating well, or it means you can justify all that garlic bread (in my case it was obviously the latter).
Oh also, sorry for being so rubbish at posting lately. Despite being FAR TOO EXCITED to share this recipe, I’ve been exhaustingly busy. To be fair, a lot of my plans have involved lying around in the glorious sunshine with friends, but still. I just couldn’t find the time to blog! However, the novelty of the sunshine has begun to wear off a little now due to my sunburnt shoulders and the annoyance of spending my days in a classroom full of whining children who ask to go to the water fountain every three minutes (and who therefore need to go to the toilet every three minutes)… so I’m sure I’ll be around a bit more now. Hurrah!
- 320g fresh spinach
- 250g ricotta cheese
- 3tbsp vegetarian parmesan-style cheese, finely grated
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 3tbsp parsley, chopped
- ½tsp garlic salt
- Black pepper
- ½tsp ground nutmeg
- 4tbsp plain flour
- Tomato sauce, to serve (or an alternative sauce of your choosing)
- Preheat the oven to 190°C (Gas Mark 5 / 375°F).
- Cook the spinach until thoroughly wilted. You can do this by blanching it in a pan of hot water, pan frying it over a low heat for several minutes, or microwaving it in batches (this is what I did – it took around a minute per bowlful) When the spinach is wilted, leave it to cool, and then squeeze as much liquid out of it as possible. You can just do this with your hands, but it might be easier to wrap it in a clean tea towel and then squeeze over a sink.
- When the spinach is fairly dry, add it to a bowl with the remaining ingredients. Mix well.
- Shape the mixture into ball shapes, and place on a lightly greased baking tray. I made around 12 dumplings with my mixture, but if you prefer you could make slightly smaller balls and adjust the cooking time accordingly.
- Bake for 25 minutes, or until the dumplings are golden brown and slightly crispy. Serve with tomato sauce if desired.