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  • Writer's picturePasta Grammar

Polpette di Ricotta | Vegetarian Ricotta “Meatball” Recipe

This recipe has always been a great meatball alternative for vegetarian guests, but it really deserves to be appreciated on its own terms: as a delicious treat for anyone who loves cheese. These cheesy polpette are super simple to make and sure to keep you coming back for more!

Polpette di Ricotta | Vegetarian Ricotta “Meatball” Recipe

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Makes: About 20 polpette

Cook Time: 35 minutes

For this recipe, you will need:

  • 18 ounces (500 g) ricotta

  • 1.75 ounces (50 g) grated pecorino cheese, or to taste

  • 1.75 ounces (50 g) grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, or to taste

  • 3 large eggs

  • About 1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped (optional)

  • Fresh black pepper

  • Salt

  • About 1 to 1 ½ cups (100-150 g) fresh bread crumbs, adjusted to taste

  • 4 tablespoons (60 g) extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 clove garlic, peeled

In a large mixing bowl combine the ricotta, cheeses, eggs, parsley, plenty of black pepper, and a big pinch of salt. Add about half of the bread crumbs and mix together with a spoon. Gradually continue to add more bread crumbs until the mixture becomes soft and moldable, but no longer sticks to your hands when you roll a piece between your palms.

Roll the mixture into balls, about 2 inches (5 cm) in diameter.

Heat the olive oil and garlic clove in a wide pot over medium heat. When the garlic starts to sizzle, place the ricotta polpette into the bottom of the pot. Gently swirl the pot to move the polpette around and coat them with olive oil.

Fill the pot with about ½ inch (1.25 cm) of warm water. Lower the heat, bring the liquid to a simmer, and cover the pot. Cook for 20 minutes, occasionally swirling the pot to stir. If the water evaporates completely, add a little bit more as necessary to keep a simmer going.

Serve warm and fresh, drizzled with the pan juices. Buon appetito!

This recipe works best with real ricotta, not the poor substitute you'll find in a store. Why not try making some at home? Looking for more vegetarian meatball alternatives? Check out our recipe for Calabrian eggplant polpette!

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