Ricotta Pie

It’s hard to believe that Ramadan is almost over–and so are the super generous giveaways by Saffron Road and Whole Foods! Throughout the month of Ramadan (and shortly before), they have given away four separate gift cards for $100 each plus coupons for free Saffron Road halal frozen entrees, which are available at Whole Foods Markets. At the end of this post, find out how you can enter to win. We’ll announce the winner around ‘Eid time, insha’allah.

The last ten days of Ramadan are upon us and it’s a special time for Muslims to really try as hard as possible to dedicate a good amount of time (especially in the night hours) to prayer, spiritual reflection, repentance and worship of the Creator. Most people aren’t thinking so much of food and gatherings as much as earlier in the month, but planning for ‘Eid-ul-Fitr, or the three-day celebration that marks the end of the holy month of fasting, is somewhere in the back of our minds.

Where will ‘Eid be spent? What will we make for guests? If going to someone’s home, what’s a good hostess gift to bring? If visiting multiple families and friends, what’s an economical yet thoughtful way to say Eid Mubarak (Happy ‘Eid)?

The first day of ‘Eid (the day after the last day of Ramadan, which is also the last day of fasting) begins early. The special ‘Eid prayer is only conducted in the morning and there are usually two prayers to accomodate people, some of which begin as early as 8am.  Often times the turnouts are so large that in places like Chicago, stadiums or banquet halls are rented out to fit all the people who attend.

After ‘Eid, most people will go somewhere to eat lunch or brunch, either at a restaurant or someone’s home for what is often referred to as an open house.  I like to bring desserts because often times it’s either an afterthought for a busy host, and/or truly enjoyable for them and the rest of the guests to have something homemade and different from what they might be used to eating.

This ‘Eid, I’m also thinking of light foods- it’s still summer her in the Midwest and after all the scrumptuous food on ‘Eid day, it’s hard to refuse a light dessert that won’t put you over the top.

My recipe for Ricotta Pie is one such dessert that I absolutely love sharing. Most people think of ricotta cheese as going in lasagna dishes, but it’s actualy a wonderful cheese for desserts, too. It bakes well, it seasons well (savory or sweet) and is lighter than cottage or cream cheeses, so pies made out of ricotta are a huge welcome when other heavier foods abound.

Ricotta Pie

Buy a great quality ricotta cheese or make it yourself (I’ll post that recipe another time, insha’allah, as it’s not hard to make at all). You don’t need the sugar to be vanilla flavored as indicated ed in the recipe, but if you want to follow that special ingredient, simply cut open a vanilla bean and place it in your jar or bag of sugar at least three days before making the pie. The cocoa doesn’t have to be cinnamon-flavored, either, but if do it that way insha’allah you’ll find that it’s absolutely fabulous.

Serves 8

Ingredients

4 cups ricotta cheese

3 eggs

¾ cup vanilla-flavored sugar

¼ cup organic cane brown sugar

1 ready-made pie crust (optional)

½ cup shaved almonds

2 tablespoon cinnamon flavored cocoa, sifted

Directions

Preheat oven to 350°F for at least 10 minutes.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk the ricotta and eggs together until the cheese becomes a pale yellow. Add sugars and whisk into the mixture until the sugar is well-combined.

If you won’t be using a pie crust, simply pour the mixture into a deep pie dish and level the mixture with a spatula.  If using a pie crust underneath the ricotta base, roll out the dough first and place it into the deep pie dish, crimp the edges, then pour the ricotta mixture on top and level it off with a spatula.

Bake at 350°F for 1 hour and 15 minutes to as long as 1 hour and 25 minutes, or until center is completely cooked and is somewhat firm to the touch. Let cool, then drizzle shaved almonds on top just before serving. Dust with cinnamon flavored cocoa.

Note: While cooking, the pie may thicken and rise in the oven, but fall once removed. To try and prevent this from happening, when it is finished baking, turn the oven off and leave inside for about five minutes. Remove gently to a cooling rack or cooler part of the kitchen.

Let the pie rest and cool before serving so that it can firm up, otherwise it’s a bit messy to cut and serve (but still delicious!)

 

Is there a particular food item(s) at Whole Foods Market that you would give as a gift to your family, friends or neighbors on ‘Eid?

Your answer in the comments section of this post will enter you into the giveaway for FIVE FREE Saffron Road halal frozen, redeemable at Whole Foods Markets AND a $100 Whole Foods gift card, redeemable at any U.S. Whole Foods stores.

Coupons will only be sent to U.S. addresses, as they are redeemable at Whole Foods Markets in the United States.

US Sweeps will randomly choose a winner selected from those who follow the giveaway eligibility guidelines.

Giveaway ends August 29, 2011 at 12:01 am.

To Enter the Giveaway:

*please note: if you have already subscribed and/or signed up to the pages below, there’s no need to do it again- you’re already eligible!

1) Leave a relevant comment after this post that answers the question above.

2) Subscribe to the MHK Monthly Newsletter and the blog’s email updates.

3) “Like” the Whole Foods Market Facebook Page

4) “Like” the Saffron Road Facebook Page

5) Subscribe to the Whole Story blog.

Entries (comments plus other requirements) must be received by 12:00 am on August 29, 2011

(please note: this is not a printable coupon)

 Is there a particular food item(s) at Whole Foods Market that you would give as a gift to your family, friends or neighbors on ‘Eid?

48 comments

  1. Fresh figs for my wife; they’re her favorite snack.

  2. For Eid, I would get dates! Everybody seems to love them during and after Ramadan

  3. What a lovely recipe! I am for sure going to give it a shot soon. Eid gifts I would get from Whole Foods would be a really nice bottle of organic olive oil for a foodie or an assortment of the cute desserts they have in our bakery!

  4. I like Whole Foods on FB!

  5. I like Saffron Road on FB.

  6. Their dried figs are yummy and fresh!

  7. Anything from the bakery is great!

  8. I would give my friends some Saffron Road frozen dinners, especially the lamb one that is soooooo good. Most of my friends don’t know about Saffron Road and cook from scratch with halal ingredients but everyone has busy days!!

  9. I will give baskets with fresh fruits and dates in them and lots of sweets!!! How cute will it be to make up little fruit baskets and fill them up with fresh fruits and dates. I am sure my friends will love them!!

  10. Sounds really good. I’m going to try it out. Is this recipe simliar to halwah? It sounds like it…

  11. Dried fruit gift basket would be nice. Or a selection of freshly baked sweets!

  12. It would have to be the fixings for this pie recipe. My mom is friends with this elderly Italian couple from our old complex and I remember Mrs. G giving me some ricotta pie she made when she was celebrating Easter as per her tradition. She doesn’t make it anymore as she is so old now & I think she would enjoy receiving this for Eid. I just hope Mr. G doesn’t get in trouble, he loves sweets and is always getting scolded :O)

  13. Great recipe!
    Answer to question “Is there a particular food item(s) at Whole Foods Market that you would give as a gift to your family, friends or neighbors on ‘Eid?”:
    One of the cakes from their bakery to bring as a hostess gift to the ‘open house’ invitations mentioned the post.

  14. I would buy some organic dark chocolate for my friends and family from Whole Foods!

  15. No particular food item, but anything from the bakery for my family members who do not have allergies…I plan on gifting the Whole Foods Allergy Cookbook to a family member who has food allergies. (My son has a lot of food allergies and we use the recipes in the cookbook all the time!)

  16. I would give one of the gift boxes, something like: Whole Foods Market Gift Box — Ciao Down

  17. Hmm, thats a tough one! I think I would go with baked foods…I love baked items :)

  18. I actually got a box of WF dark chocolate truffles as a gift once and since then, I always think of them when giving a gift to a loved one. I would definitely get them as a rich gift for someone during Eid.
    (I have fulfilled all other requirements for the giveaway)

    Eid Mubarak to you and your family Yvonne! Thank you for your hard work this Ramadan.

  19. I love easy, handmade gifts. I also love Whole Food’s bulk section. One of the things I make frequently is a nice crunchy granola. My favorite combination at the moment…rolled oats tossed with coconut oil and slivered almonds, toasted for 15 minutes at 350, mixed with candied ginger and dried cherries. I make a lot of it at a time. A pint jar of granola a perfect gift for whatever occasion, and granola is also a great for suhur (especially when packed with nuts and flaxseeds). Eid mubarak!

  20. This recipe is so similar to my mom’s barfi (sweet meats) recipe. I make the ricotta cheese myself and then cook with sugar until its dry. It can be baked or eaten as is.

    I an avid subscriber of Whole Foods, Saffron House & MHK. I look forward to your next newsletter.

    Hope I win this time :)

  21. Cynthia( Haleemah)Clouser

    I would most certainly give them some Saffron Food Entree’s and a large fruit and veggie basket. This would make an excellent meal.

  22. As salaamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatu,

    There are so many yummy things to choose from but I would have to say that inshaAllah I would give a fruit tray and either some WFM gelato or the carrot cake from the bakery.

  23. A selection from their endless cheese cases. I find that fine cheese is something people love but may feel it’s too much of a splurge, or they don’t know which ones are good. And some fresh artisanal bread or crackers to go with the cheese, too.

  24. Probably something from the bakery, they have great bakery items.

  25. Such lovely gift ideas, everyone! I’m looking forward to some invitations :)

  26. I would give the WFM tres leches cake to someone as an eid gift….its delicious!

  27. I have completed all of the listed requirements. :)

    I think a nice selection of Whole Foods fresh fruits/veggies, cheese and a sweet treat from the bakery would make an awesome gift. :)

  28. The perfect WF Eid gift would be a homemade basket full of different types of WF organic cheese, chocolate, and a little fruit. YUM! I love cheese!

  29. Something from the great selection at the bakery!

  30. I love their pies and cakes! They also have really great beauty items.

  31. I subscribe to the WF newsletter!

  32. I am thinking about making this recipe for my kids’ teachers for Eid : http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/recipes/2841 . Whole Foods even provides tags for cute “Gifts from the Kitchen.”

    They also make chocolate dipped strawberries and I would go for that too.

    Or chocolate covered almonds….

    Still deciding and I only have till Monday since they will miss school Tuesday for prayers! I better get crackin’!

  33. I plan on picking up some whole foods pies apple of course to be neighbor and some friends, wishing you a blessed Eid
    Sultansmom at gmail dot com

  34. I’d go with dates or figs! Thanks for the giveaway!

  35. I like WFM on Facebook!

  36. I like SR on Facebook!

  37. i love their variety of cheeses and olives. I would set that up on a beautiful platter along with some dried figs and some of their cute petit fours. yum

  38. I’ll cook & bring Chicken bites for appetizers & pick a basket with fresh fruits, figs, chocolate, and little something for the host! :)

  39. Dates, Nuts, Fruits and Chocolates – I never find better varieties of these anywhere else than Whole Foods and LOVE the fact that they are organic!

  40. may be a nice home made trail mix using all the wonder nuts and seeds available at WHOLE FOODS

  41. I usually think of bringing a lemon dessert such as a large tart or even individual tarts if its a dinner because it is easy to make and very refreshing for the summer/fall time.

  42. I Subscribed to the Whole Story blog.

  43. I “Like” the Saffron Road Facebook Page

  44. I Subscribed to the MHK Monthly Newsletter and the blog’s email updates.

  45. I “Like” the Whole Foods Market Facebook Page

  46. I would get a selection of yummy cheeses: Manchego, Stilton, goat cheese, brie…

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