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Ricotta Pancakes **

I had leftover ricotta from making lasagna earlier in the week and needed to find a way to use it up.  I figured why not make ricotta pancakes.  I found this recipe online and decided to give it a try.  I doubled the recipe and made 18 1/4 c pancakes.  I served them with maple syrup, strawberries, blueberries and thick bacon.

Ingredients
1 cup ricotta cheese
1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup milk
2 eggs, separated into yolks and whites
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Butter, for the pan

Directions
1.  If your ricotta seems to have a lot of liquid, set it in a fine mesh strainer to drain off excess liquid about 30 minutes before you start cooking. If your ricotta seems fairly dry and compact, you can skip this step - homemade ricotta wont require this step.

2.  Whisk together flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt in a small bowl. Combine ricotta, milk, egg yolks, and vanilla in a separate, larger mixing bowl. Add the dry ingredients to the ricotta and milk mixture, stirring gently until just combined.

3.  Beat the egg whites with a handheld electric mixer until stiff. Stir a small scoop of the egg whites into the pancake batter to lighten the batter, then fold in the remaining egg white with a spatula.

4.  Heat a griddle over medium-high heat. Melt a small bit of butter in the pan, just enough to coat the surface. Pour batter onto the hot griddle. Cook the pancakes for about 3 or 4 minutes, until the undersides are golden and you see a few bubbles popping through the pancakes. Flip the pancakes and cook another 2 to 3 minutes, until golden. Repeat with the remaining pancakes.

5.  Serve the pancakes immediately, with maple syrup.


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