Ricotta and chestnut fritters with bagna cauda

Yield: 4 servings

Measure Ingredient
1 cup Fresh ricotta
3 larges Eggs
½ cup Freshly-grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese; plus
4 tablespoons Freshly-grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese
¼ cup Chestnut flour; plus
2 tablespoons Chestnut flour
\N \N (available in gourmet markets)
1 cup Finely-chopped roasted chestnuts; spread out
\N \N On a flat plate
1 can Anchovy filets -; (4 oz), with their
\N \N ; juices
6 \N Garlic cloves; finely chopped
½ cup Extra-virgin olive oil
6 tablespoons Unsalted butter
1 quart Pure; (pomace) olive oil,
\N \N ; for frying

In New York City you can find roasted chestnuts readily. If you cannot find roasted chestnuts, here is what to do. Take 10 chestnuts and score a cross on the pointed end of each chestnut and roast in the oven at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes. Peel the nuts and chop them until the texture is of bread crumbs. Set aside.

In a large mixing bowl place the ricotta cheese, 2 eggs and ½ cup Parmigiano-Reggiano and blend well. With your hands mix in the chestnut flour until a smooth cookie-like dough forms. If the dough is too soft add slightly more chestnut flour until you reach the desired consistency. To test the dough, form a small ball and set aside. The dough ball should be able to hold its shape.

In a small bowl beat the remaining egg. Take a small amount of the ricotta mixture and make a 2-inch ball. Carefully cover the ball with the beaten egg and while still wet, dredge in chopped chestnuts. Gently press the nuts so that they adhere. Continue this process until all the cheese mixture is finished. Allow the balls to rest for 20 minutes on a plate in your refrigerator to dry.

Pour the 1 quart olive oil into a large 4-quart sauce pan, one with sides at least 6 inches high. Heat the oil over medium heat until just smoking.

Meanwhile combine the anchovies with their juices, garlic and ½ cup olive oil in a small sauce pan and stir over medium heat. Mash the anchovies to a paste and cook until just warm but not hot -- about 10 minutes. Stir in the butter 1 tablespoon at a time until melted and smooth. Set aside.

Fry the ricotta balls in hot oil until golden brown, turning with tongs about 3 to 4 minutes. Remove ricotta balls with tongs to a plate covered with paper towels. Place in a warm oven (180 degrees) while frying the remainder of the balls. Pour bagna cauda into individual ramekins and serve as a dipping sauce.

Source: MOLTO MARIO with Mario Batali From the TV FOOD NETWORK - (Show # MB-5621)

Per serving: 447 Calories (kcal); 48g Total Fat; (94% calories from fat); 5g Protein; 2g Carbohydrate; 187mg Cholesterol; 45mg Sodium Food Exchanges: 0 Grain(Starch); ½ Lean Meat; ½ Vegetable; 0 Fruit; 9 Fat; 0 Other Carbohydrates

Recipe by: Mario Batali

Converted by MM_Buster v2.0n.

Similar recipes