Baked Fresh Cheese With Lemon and Herbs

Makes 1 cup.

Note: This recipe works beautifully with ricotta, fresh chèvre or a mixture of both. Serve it warm with bruschetta or crackers, or allow to cool, invert onto a plate and surround with crostini. It will store for up to three days, covered and refrigerated. If it’s a little too moist or watery, drain the ricotta in a cheesecloth-lined sieve for about 10 minutes. From Beth Dooley.

• 1 c. ricotta or fresh chèvre, or combination of the two (see Note)

• 2 scant tbsp. chopped thyme

• 1 tbsp. lemon zest

• 1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice, or to taste

• Generous pinch red pepper flakes, to taste

• Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

• 2 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil, optional

Directions

Preheat oven to 370 degrees. Lightly grease an ovenproof 2-cup ramekin or baking dish.

In a small bowl, whisk together the fresh cheese, thyme, lemon zest, lemon juice, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Place in a ramekin or baking dish. Bake until firm and golden brown, about 15 to 25 minutes. Remove and drizzle with the oil and serve warm. Or, allow to cool, invert onto a plate, and serve sliced.

Nutrition information per 2 tablespoons:

Calories 55 Fat 4 g Sodium 30 mg

Carbohydrates 1 g Saturated fat 3 g Total sugars 1 g

Protein 4 g Cholesterol 15 mg Dietary fiber 0 g

Exchanges per serving: ½ high-fat protein.