Zucchini Ricotta Cheesecake

This is by far my favorite recipe from Heidi Swanson’s recipe blog.  I made it in early August while at the beach with my family, but grated the zucchini too fine… and then couldn’t find an appropriate baking dish… and ended up with Zucchini Ricotta muffins.  They were tasty, but I thought I’d try it again.

I’m a HUGE fan of this recipe. It’s super easy, hearty but not overly filling… definitely one to try.

Zucchini Ricotta Cheesecake

2 cups zucchini, unpeeled & grated [use a box grater, not a microplane]
1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
2 1/2 cups ricotta cheese [I used 2 c full fat; 1/2 c 1% ricotta]
1/2 cup freshly shredded Parmesan cheese [I used pecorino]
2 shallots, chopped [I used 1/2 red onion]
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1/4 cup fresh dill, chopped [I omitted this –the farmer’s market was out of dill]
zest of one lemon
2 large eggs, well beaten
1/3 cup goat cheese, crumbled
drizzle of olive oil

Preheat oven to 325F degrees, racks the middle. Butter/oil a 7-inch springform pan.

In a strainer, toss the shredded zucchini with the salt and let sit for ten minutes. Now aggressively squeeze and press out as much moisture as you can. Set aside.

In the meantime, combine the ricotta cheese, Parmesan cheese, shallots, garlic, dill and lemon zest in a medium bowl. Stir in the eggs and continue mixing until well combined. Now stir in the shredded zucchini. Fill the springform pan with the ricotta mixture and place on a baking sheet. Place in the oven and bake for sixty minutes. If there is any moisture left on top of the cake at this point, carefully use a bit of paper towel to dab it off. Now sprinkle with the goat cheese and return to the oven for another 20 -30 minutes or until the goat cheese is melted and the cake barely jiggles in the center (it will set up more as it cools).

At this point, if the cake is baked and set, but the top isn’t quite golden, I’ll zap it with the broiler (just about a minute) to get a bit more color on top. Remove from the oven and let cool five minutes, then release the cake from its pan. Cool completely, serve at room temperature drizzled with a bit of olive oil and a few sprigs of dill.

Serves 8.

Update: It’s even better the second day.  I heated it up in a non-stick skillet, so that the cheese got a bit crispy.

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