Make Ahead

Ricotta, Feta and Mint Layers with Honeyed Blood Oranges

March  5, 2010
3 Ratings
  • Serves 3 or more
Author Notes

I love the sweetness and tanginess of these ingredients. Sometimes, if I’m really impatient, I’ll skip the ricotta and the loaf pan, chunk the feta and mix it with torn mint and the honeyed oranges, and serve it in small bowls. It’s almost a dessert. Or a great cheese course for sweet dessert eaters like me. My recipe is adapted from Ricotta and Caprino Layered with Fresh Basil Leaves, from the cookbook My Italian Garden by Viana La Place. —mrslarkin

Test Kitchen Notes

What we love about mrslarkin’s recipe is that it takes three grab bag ingredients (feta, blood oranges and mint) and combines in a thoughtful way, elevating the whole to much more than the sum of its parts. A scoop of ricotta tames the feta’s brininess, and the honey (mrslarkin recommends buckwheat, but you can use whatever you like) coaxes maximum sweetness from the blood oranges, smoothing out its tart edges. A few fragrant mint leaves, peeking delicately out the sides of the slab of cheese, lend a certain sophistication. Brought together in this way, these apparently disparate elements make for a great hors d’oeuvre, or a playful dessert and cheese course all in one. - A&M —The Editors

What You'll Need
  • 4 ounces feta
  • 4 ounces ricotta
  • large bunch of fresh mint leaves
  • olive oil
  • sea salt
  • 4 tablespoons buckwheat honey
  • 2 blood oranges, segmented and chopped, membranes reserved
  1. In a shallow bowl or dish, mash the feta with the back of a fork. Add the ricotta and stir together very well.
  2. Lightly oil a 3” x 6” mini loaf pan with olive oil.
  3. Spread 1/3 of the cheese mixture into the bottom of the pan. Cover with a single layer of mint leaves, and gently press them into the cheese. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt. Continue with another layer of cheese, followed by a layer of mint leaves, drizzle of olive oil and sprinkle of sea salt. Spread the last layer of cheese on top, another drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkle of sea salt. Place a piece of plastic wrap on the top layer of cheese to keep it moist.
  4. Combine the honey and chopped orange segments in a bowl. Squeeze the juice from the reserved membrane onto the segments. Stir together gently.
  5. Remove the plastic wrap from the cheese. Invert the mini loaf pan onto a serving dish. Spoon the honeyed oranges over top.
  6. Garnish with additional fresh mint leaves. Serve with pita chips, pita bread wedges, or crostini.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Chef Devaux
    Chef Devaux
  • gingerroot
  • arielleclementine
  • Helenthenanny
  • lastnightsdinner

24 Reviews

kkelleycooks June 19, 2018
Going to try this with strawberries instead of blood oranges!
K N. January 22, 2017
I love this recipe. I made it for several gatherings a couple of years ago and then got distracted by other recipes and forgot about it. Then out of the blue the craving for bright, citrusy, sweet, and salty cheesy goodness hit and I'm prepping this now to take to a potluck later today. So tasty!
Chef D. December 17, 2015
cheese time!
Ceege March 25, 2013
Is this considered a dessert?
mrslarkin March 25, 2013
it can be either a savory dessert or as part of a cheese course.
Chef D. December 17, 2015
it must be
gingerroot November 28, 2010
This sounds amazing. YUM!
mrslarkin November 28, 2010
Thanks!! I could eat this whole thing myself.
arielleclementine March 14, 2010
this is perfectly lovely, mrslarkin! i'll be trying it soon!
mrslarkin March 14, 2010
Thanks so much, arielleclementine! Hope you like it!
Helenthenanny March 13, 2010
This is so lovely mrslarkin, congrats! So glad to be a finalist with you!!
mrslarkin March 13, 2010
Thank you, Helen!! Not sure what my chances are, up against your fantastic fro-yo. But honored to be up there with you!
lastnightsdinner March 13, 2010
If I wasn't allergic to oranges, I'd make this today. What a lovely presentation and a clever way to combine these ingredients!
mrslarkin March 13, 2010
Thanks, LND! Sorry about your orange allergy! I bet it might work with a different topping, like a mint pesto, or a chutney, or something.
monkeymom March 12, 2010
mrslarkin, I guess this is the upside to the broken oven! Congrats on being a finalist. This looks beautiful.
mrslarkin March 13, 2010
Thank you, monkeymom! Yes, this has pulled me out of my oven-deprived depression...
Furey A. March 11, 2010
I agree with Naked Beet, this is a beautiful presentation and would be perfect for a dinner party. And the buckwheat honey idea is awesome!
mrslarkin March 11, 2010
Thanks, Furey! So glad you like it.
NakedBeet March 11, 2010
A great show off food for dinner parties. I love that you combine feta and ricotta and buckwheat honey is one of my favorites.
mrslarkin March 11, 2010
Thank you, NB! I love all honey, but buckwheat sure is a fav of mine too.
Allison C. March 11, 2010
Congratulations on being selected as a finalist. This really sounds great, and I'll definitely be making it. No idea how I'll ever choose between the two recipes this week. Maybe I'll figure out how to hack the system and vote twice? (No, A&M, I'm kidding, I'd never do that!). Good luck and congrats again.
mrslarkin March 11, 2010
Thanks so much, FTSACP! I hope you like it!!
Lizthechef March 5, 2010
Sounds quite tasty - wish there was a photo because I'll bet it's pretty too...Love the combo of ricotta with the feta.
mrslarkin March 6, 2010
Thanks, Liz. Here's the photo! (I ran out of blood oranges. Shown in the pic are Cara Cara oranges. Still very tasty!)