Crushed pea, mint and whipped ricotta crostini with lemon and Parmesan

Crostini are not dissimilar to bruschetta but are smaller and often served as nibbles with an aperitivo. I think traditionally they are made with thin slices of stale white ciabatta, and I actually used thicker slices of fresh brown bread here so technically these should probably just be called peas on toast but I felt like being fancy.

Feel free to use whichever bread you prefer, but one that toasts well. Adjust the amount of garlic to your own taste. My Dad is on constant garlic patrol and commented that I’d used too much on his first mouthful.

Pea, mint, whipped ricotta, lemon crostini 2

Crushed pea, mint and whipped ricotta crostini with lemon and Parmesan

SERVES

Makes 4 large pieces or 6 smaller ones

INGREDIENTS

200g frozen peas
A good handful of fresh mint leaves, chopped
Extra virgin olive oil
Rock salt
Cracked black pepper
200g ricotta
4- 6 slices of bread
½ – 1 clove of garlic, peeled and cut in half
Zest of 1 lemon
Handful of rocket
Parmesan or pecorino cheese

METHOD

Boil a saucepan of water and put the peas in to defrost. Once they are ready, drain the water and put the peas back in the pan. Add the chopped mint, a glug of olive oil, a large pinch of salt and lots of pepper and stir. Use a potato masher to roughly crush the peas. Taste and add more salt/ pepper as needed. Set aside.

Put the ricotta on a plate or in a bowl and use a few pieces of kitchen roll to squeeze out some of the excess liquid. Then, using an electric whisk, whip the ricotta for a minute or so to incorporate a bit of air.

Toast or grill the slices of bread then, while they are still hot brush with olive oil and rub them gently with the cut side of the garlic over the top.

Spoon some ricotta on to each of the pieces of toast then top with some of the crushed pea mixture. Grate some lemon zest on top and scatter over a few bits of rocket.

To finish, thickly grate some Parmesan cheese and crumble on top. Drizzle a little more extra virgin olive oil on top before serving.

Pea, mint, whipped ricotta, lemon crostini 4

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