Barbara Venezia...
Stirring the pot of controversy
 one column at a time...
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People always ask me for this recipe. It's one of the few things I can make well... so here it is. 



Recipe for Italian Cheesecake Using Polly-O Ricotta

 

What you’ll need:

2 cups of sugar    Graham crackers     ½ cup sifted flour   8 egg yokes

8 egg whites      Lemon rind grated      1 teaspoon vanilla  12 inch spring form pan

      3 lb. Ricotta

 

How to Prepare

Take a spring form pan and grease with butter all around the sides and bottom of pan. Next take your Graham crackers and put a few in a plastic baggy. With a mallet, crush the graham crackers until they are a fine powder. Try not to get too many lumpy pieces.


Now over a sink, pour your crushed Graham crackers in the greased pan and keep moving the pan around so that the crushed crackers coat the sides and bottom of the pan well. Set aside place in fridge until you are ready.

 

Then place the 3 lbs.of Polly O Ricotta  in a large mixing bowl. The brand Polly O is important to use so try and find it at Bristol Farms. I've used other brands and it doesn't come out the same. 


With a hand held electric mixer, mix in the sugar and flour. Be sure the mixture is smooth.

 

In two separate bowls, separate the egg yolks and whites. Beat the egg whites until stiff. Beat the egg yolks.

 

Take a whole lemon and with a hand grater and grate the skin.  Depending on your personal taste decide how much of lemon you grind. I use 1/2  the lemon rind. Mix that into the Ricotta mixture along with the vanilla. Now add your egg yolks. Beat with a hand mixer and be sure this stays smooth. Add sugar and flour slowly to mixture. 

 

The next step is to fold in your egg whites.  The key here is to make sure you have no lumps in your Ricotta mixture. Now you are ready to pour into your pan and bake.

 

Bake at 425 degrees for 10 minutes. Then lower the temperature to 350 degrees and back for an hour.  Cool in oven. Don’t be impatient because if you take out of oven too quickly your cake will fall.

 

When ready to serve, sprinkle powdered sugar on top!


I make several at a time and they freeze well to use later. I wrap each one in plastic wrap and the longest I've left one frozen is about 4 months and it was delicious.