Recipe no. 1 Savoury baked ricotta, rhubarb, caraway, by Alisdair Brooke-Taylor- SPRING FOOD & WINE PAIRING CASE

Recipe No. 1: Savoury baked ricotta, steamed rhubarb, caraway oil

Perfect for the 2022 Jean Maupertuis 'Pink Bulles'

By former head chef and co-owner of The Moorcock Inn, Alisdair Brooke-Taylor

Jean Maupertuis 'Pink Bulles', Auvergne, France

This is a savoury dish, with golden caramelisation of the ricotta, tanginess from rhubarb, a little heat and aniseed spice from the caraway dressing. The Jean Maupertuis 'Pink Bulles' is a gently sparkling Gamay, with a touch of residual sugar, balanced by a steel core of acidity. Expect bright strawberry fruit, delicate florals and bitter citrus, which match the rhubarb in flavour profile, while the texture of the wine is a complement to the ricotta. The tiny bit of residual sugar offers relief against the heat and spice of the dressing, while the bright acidity freshens the palate.

Serves 2 as a starter, or 4 for nibbles as part of a spread. Serve on its own, or with crusty bread.

Ingredients List

- Rhubarb
- Salt
- 1 egg
- A pinch of thyme
- 20g grated parmesan
- 1 tsp lemon zest
- 170g cream
If using home made ricotta
- 600g milk
- 2.4g citric acid
- 20g water
- 200g ricotta
Caraway oil
- 1.5g caraway
- 1.5g Korean pepper flakes
- 1.5g cracked pepper
- 70g olive oil

As a first step (and this can be done ahead of time), prepare the caraway oil.
Ingredients: 1.5g caraway seeds, 1.5g Korean pepper flakes, 1.5g pepper berry powder (or cracked peppercorns), 70g olive oil
NOTE: This makes enough for the recipe, but do feel free to scale up and make more for other uses afterwards! 

Process: Simply heat the oil to 150 degrees C, and pour it over the spices. Allow it to then cool at room temperature. 

Move on to making the ricotta, which is a simple enough process, but gives superior results in terms of flavour:

Ingredients: 600g milk, 2.4g citric acid, 20g water
1) Warm milk in a shallow pan to 60 degrees C
2) Mix citric acid and cold water to dissolve
3) Pour acid mix into the milk while stirring constantly
4) Separate curd and whey by straining though a cheesecloth (or similar)
5) Hang until all excess whey has drained
6) Cool immediately

Next, prepare the rhubarb. 
1) Wash and cut into 4cm lengths
2) Bake in a single, layered tray, covered in foil at 200 degrees C, for 20 minutes, or until soft
3) Whisk to break up the fibres and strain. Chill the solids
4) Reduce cooking juices in a pan to concentrate, then add back to the rhubarb solids
5) Season with salt to taste

And, finally:

Ingredients: 200g ricotta, 1 egg, thyme, 20g grated parmesan, salt, lemon zest, 170g cream
Process: Combine and whisk ingredients
2. Portion into baking dishes.
3. Bake at 200C for 14 minutes or until set and beginning to turn golden