With a surplus of basil this summer from my CSA, I have been creating several different ways to use it! I made this Basil Cheese Pie. Smooth, creamy, and “basily” delicious. There are endless possibilities of adaptations and toppings you can use to make this dish personalized to your liking! It is great for using as an appetizer, side dish, or for brunch.
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Here’s what you need:
- 2 cups of fresh basil leaves
- 1/2 grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/2 cup pine nuts
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1/2 cup olive oil, plus more if needed
- salt and pepper, to taste
For the Cheese Pie:
- 16 oz part-skim ricotta cheese
- 1/2 cup light sour cream
- 3 eggs
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- 1/2 teaspoon of pepper
- olive oil sprayed from a MISTO
- 1/4 cup sun dried tomatoes, chopped
- 1 cup Italian seasoned panko
- 1 cup pesto (see recipe above)
- water bath (Another dish filled with water for your pie pan to sit in while baking to keep the pie moist. Be sure to measure the water on the bath with your pie pan before filling to prevent a flood… Been there, done that!)
Here’s what you do:
- Preheat the oven to 375º.
- Toast the pine nuts until golden brown. Allow them to cool to room temperature. (takes about 2 minutes or so)
- Make the pesto by combining all ingredients into a food processor and blending together. You might need to add more oil to the food processor in order to have the pesto reach the consistency of a paste. Set the pesto aside.
- Spray a pie pan with olive oil from a MISTO. Coat the bottom and the sides of the pan with breadcrumbs. Set aside.
- In a bowl, beat the eggs. Add in the ricotta cheese, sour cream, sundried tomatoes, pesto,salt, and pepper. Stir to incorporate. Pour into a pie pan.
- Submerge the pie pan into the water bath and bake for 30-35 minutes, The sides should brown a bit, and the center should not be jiggly. Real technical….
- Garnish with tomatoes and basil.
Other options might be other grilled veggies, fresh tomato sauce, olives, etc…