Cheese recipes of the month: we’re going Italian

I have to admit to being a bit of a cheese lover. Easily able to turn down the prospect of pudding, I can rarely say no to a cheeseboard. Cheese is also great for cooking with and a great way to liven up vegetables (think cauliflower cheese, one of my favourites) or  bring another dimension to dishes.

So I was delighted when I was sent the new Italian cheese range from DIVO Cheeses selected by renowned Italian chef Aldo Zilli. There’s Gorgonzola, Ricotta and amazing Parmigiano to choose from. I’m concocting some new recipes as I write this (in my head!) but in the meantime, here’s some from Aldo himself. Particularly love the souffles!

Truffle and DIVO Parmigiano Reggiano souffles

The ultimate in indulgent souffles

The ultimate in indulgent souffles

Serves 4

2 tablespoons butter, plus extra for greasing

4 tablespoons breadcrumbs

4 tablespoons plain flour

75 ml milk

200g mozzarella cut into pieces

2 tablespoons DIVO grated heart of Parmigiano Reggiano cheese\

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

50 g fresh truffle, finely sliced, or use truffle paste

4 eggs, separated

4 tbsps truffle oil, to drizzle

Preheat the oven to 190°C.

Butter 4 ramekins and coat with the breadcumbs.

Mix together the flour and milk. Melt the butter in a pan and gradually stir in the milk mixture.

Continue stirring and cooking the sauce until it just reaches boiling point. Cook the sauce for 3 minutes, then add the mozzarella, DIVO Parmigiano Reggiano, seasoning, truffle and egg yolks.

In a large bowl, whisk the egg whites to stiff peaks. Gently fold the whites into the truffle mixture. Pour into the coated ramekins and cook for 23 mins.

Serve immediately.

Cannellini bean soup

Zesty soup with Parmesan

Zesty soup with Parmesan

Serves 4

1 onion, quartered

3 garlic cloves

40g fresh parsley

2 tbsps olive oil

2 x 400g cans cannellini beans

1.2 litres chicken stock

Juice of 1 lemon

DIVO Parmigiano Reggiano P.D.O. Extra, for grating over the top

Blend the onion, garlic and parsley in a food processor until finely chopped.

Heat the oil in a pan, add mixture and cook until the onion is soft. Add the cannellini beans and cook for two minutes. Pour over the stock, season and bring to the boil. Cover and cook for 15 mins until the beans are cooked.

Add the lemon juice and reheat gently before serving with the DIVO Parmigiano Reggiano Extra grated over the top

Aubergine Cannelloni

Aubergine cannelloni stuffed with silken ricotta

Aubergine cannelloni stuffed with silken ricotta

Serves 4

2 aubergines

300g DIVO ricotta

50g DIVO Parmigiano Reggiano Extra, grated (or for vegetarians DIVO Vegetarian Grated Italian Hard Cheese)

150g mozzarella, finely diced

15g fresh basil, torn into pieces, plus extra to garnish

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

200g cherry tomatoes

4 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil

Preheat the oven to 180°C

Cut the aubergines lengthways into 5 mm thick slices and grill on both sides until soft.

In a bowl, mix the DIVO ricotta with half the grated DIVO Parmigiano Reggiano (or for vegetarians, DIVO Vegetarian Grated Italian hard cheese) and the mozzarella. Add almost all the basil and seasonings.

Spread the ricotta mixture over each aubergine slice and roll up.

Arrange the aubergine rolls in a buttered roasting tin and sprinkle with the rest of the grated DIVO Parmigiano Reggiano/DIVO Vegetarian Grated Italian hard cheese. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, blend the cherry tomatoes with the olive oil and remaining basil leaves in a blender or food processor. Pour the sauce into a pan and heat through.

Serve the cannelloni, sprinkled with the extra basil, with the tomato sauce.

The DIVO range of cheeses are available from Ocado and Morrisons.

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