Lemony Whipped Ricotta Toasts with Cherry Tomatoes & Mint
Come August, the only thing on our minds is all the peak-season produce pouring out of the farmer's markets. Crisp cucumbers, sweet, thin-skinned peppers, fragrant melon, juicy stone fruit and of course, the king of summer produce: tomatoes. These simple toasts allow these majesties of summer to take center stage thanks to a splash of Spanish Moscatell vinegar. The vinegar's crisp, bright fruitiness and delicate acidity brings out the tomatoes inherenet sweetness. Combined with thick slices of fried bread, cool, creamy swooshes of lemony whipped ricotta, these toasts embody summer at its best.
Recipe, food styling and photography by Asha Loupy
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 45 minutes
- Total Time: 1 hour
- 3 cups cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered (depending on size)
- 8 tablespoons mild extra virgin olive oil, divided, plus more for finishing
- 1 1/2 tablespoons Moscatell Vinegar from Espelt Viticultors
- 1 1/4 teaspoon Fleur de Sel from M. Gilles Hervy, divided, plus more for finishing
- 1 1/2 cup whole cow's milk ricotta
- Zest of one lemon (about 1 1/2–2 teaspoons)
- 1/2 cup fresh mint leaves, torn into bite-sized pieces
- 6 slices of crusty bread, such as French Batard or Levain
In a large bowl, combine the cherry tomatoes, 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, Moscatell vinegar and one teaspoon fleur de sel. Toss to coat the tomatoes in the olive oil and vinegar, cover and let macerate for 30 minutes at room temperature.
While the tomatoes are macerating, prepare the whipped lemony ricotta and toasts. To make the whipped lemony ricotta, combine the ricotta with 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, lemon zest and the remaining 1/4 teaspoon fleur de sel. Blend until smooth, about 30 seconds to one minute. Transfer the ricotta to a bowl and refrigerate until ready to use.
To prepare the toasts, heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil and continue to heat for another 30 seconds. Add 3 slices of bread and toast until golden brown on both sides, about 2–3 minutes per side. Repeat with the remaining 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil and 3 slices of bread. Transfer the finished toasts to a platter.
When ready to serve, add the fresh mint leaves to the tomatoes and toss to combine. To assemble the toasts, slather each toast with a generous layer of lemony whipped ricotta, arranging the finished cheese-covered toast on a serving platter. Divide the macarated tomatoes among the toasts, mounding them on top of the lemony whipped ricotta. Don't waste the dressing; drizzle it over the toasts as a garnish and finish with an additional sprinkle of fleur de sel. Serve immediately.