Sometimes it's nice to put a bit of effort into breakfast... And this is a good one for a special occasion - Bill Granger's ricotta hot cakes...
I first had these on the last day of a trip to Australia, at the excellent Sydney cafe, Bill's. It's feels like quite a decadent breakfast, and they definitely look pretty impressive, covered in fruit or syrup, but the light, open texture, means they don't slow you down too much for the rest of the morning.
At Bill's cafe, they are served with banana and honeycomb butter, which is very, very tasty, but the honeycomb takes a while to make, and seems a bit more indulgent than just using fruit. Having said that, as well as strawberries, I made a cheats version of blueberry sauce, using some jam, some berries, icing sugar and water, so I suppose mine still had a fair sugar kick. But I did throw in a couple of handfuls of rolled oats to make it (seem) a little healthier.
It seems like there are a few steps involved in this, but it's not that much effort really, and your breakfast companion(s) will certainly be impressed... Have a go.
For the hot cakes:
4 eggs, separated
140g plain flower
1 tsp baking powder
2 handfuls of rolled oats
a pinch of salt
a few small knobs of butter
For the blueberry sauce:
a punett of blue berries
2-3 tsps of strawberry or blackberry jam
1 tsp icing sugar
a splash of water
Strawberries or seasonal fruit
Whisk the egg whites so they form stiff peaks.
Mix the egg yolks, ricotta and milk together in a mixing bowl, and then sift in the flour, baking powder and pinch of salt. Stir in the oats if you're using them. Fold the egg whites into the other flour and ricotta mixture, so it's just combined.
Put a small pan on a medium heat, and add the jam, blueberries, water and icing sugar, and bring to the boil. Turn the heat right down then leave to simmer until the berries have softened and the liquid has reduced slightly.
Heat a frying pan on a medium heat, and grease with a small knob of butter. Add the hot cake batter a spoonful or so at a time, and cook in batches.
The hot cakes will take about 3-4 minutes on each side, but you'll know when they're ready to be flipped because they'll come away from the bottom of the pan. Flip them and cook for another few minutes. Breakfast, Sydney style...