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Nigel Slater's recipe for a Spring day

A Recipe for a Spring Day from Nigel Slater

A Recipe for a Spring Day from Nigel Slater 

Spinach Ricotta Pancakes, Soured Cream

Serves 2


spinach leaves – 100g

eggs – 3

ricotta – 250g

plain flour 50g

Parmesan, finely grated – 2 tablespoons

butter, melted – 2 tablespoons

basil leaves – a handful

parsley leaves – a handful

a little more butter for cooking


Wash the spinach leaves, and while they are still wet, put them into a large saucepan over a moderate heat. Cover tightly with a lid and let the leaves cook, in their own steam, for a minute or two. Turn the leaves over and continue cooking, covered for a further minute. Drain the leaves then squeeze the water from them with your hands and set aside. 

Separate the eggs, putting the whites into a bowl large enough to beat them in. Stir the ricotta into the egg yolks, then add the flour, the finely grated Parmesan and the melted butter. Chop a small handful of basil and parsley, stir them in, then season with a little salt and set aside. Finely chop the spinach.

Beat the egg whites until light and fluffy, then stir into the ricotta mixture together with the chopped spinach. Melt a little butter in a non-stick frying pan over a moderate heat. When it sizzles lightly, add a sixth of the ricotta mixture and pat it lightly into a small cake, about the circumference of a digestive biscuit, with the back of a spoon. Add another two. When the cakes have coloured lightly in the base, flip them over with a palette knife (do this quickly and confidently and they won't break), then let the other side become a soft, pale gold. The full cooking time shouldn't be more than a few minutes.

Repeat with the remaining mixture. Remove the cakes with a palette knife or spatula, rest briefly on kitchen paper, then transfer to a plate. Serve with soured cream if you wish.

From A Cook’s Book, published by Fourth Estate, £30