OK...so remember the lemon ricotta muffin I talked about at Intelligentsia coffee last week? You know, the one that I said I would most certainly not eat entirely, but the one that I actually ate every crumb of? Yeah, that one. Ahem. Well, I am now certain that Intelligentsia (or whoever provides their baked goods) stole the recipe from Giada de Laurentiis! I have had her recipe for Nonna's Lemon Ricotta Biscuits in my "want to try" file for some time...and after tasting that muffin last week I knew I had to go try Giada's recipe right away. And, guess what - they are pretty much exactly the same! I have to tell Giada this! Is she on Facebook?
I'm not sure why these are called biscuits. They are clearly muffins. But whatever Giada calls them is fine with me because these are the bomb. So moist, lemony, and with that hint of almond extract which I
could take a bath in love. And, since I love almond extract so much, I modified the recipe a bit when I made it, adding a little drizzle of the extract to the almonds that go on top of the muffin batter before cooking. Then, I put a sprinkle of sugar on top which made the perfect crust. Incidentally, I was out of "sliced almonds" as the recipe calls for, so I ground up some whole almonds instead. It worked in a pinch, but the sliced almonds are really much better, texture wise.
So, do you think it will be totally weird if I bring-my-own lemon ricotta muffin next time I go to Intelligentsia?
I thought so.
Nonna's Lemon Ricotta Biscuits
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup plus more sugar as needed for sprinkling
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest
1 cup whole-milk ricotta cheese
1 large egg
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1/3 cup thinly sliced almonds
Grease 12 muffin cups. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl to blend. Using an electric mixer, beat 1 cup sugar, butter, and lemon zest in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Beat in the ricotta. Beat in the egg, lemon juice, and almond extract. Add the dry ingredients and stir just until blended (the batter will be thick and fluffy).
Divide the batter among the prepared muffin cups. Sprinkle the almonds and then some sugar over the muffins. Bake until the muffins just become pale golden on top, about 20 minutes. Check these at 15 minutes...do not overcook. Cool slightly. Serve warm or at room temperature.