LEMON AND RICOTTA PANCAKES

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When it comes to romance, I'm a feeder. That's why I'll be making these fluffy lemon and ricotta pancakes for Mr. Spring and I tomorrow, on Valentine's morning.

Soft ricotta and bright lemon make a perfect pair, especially when swirled together into an airy pancake. You'll need to separate the eggs, whip the whites and fold them into the batter at the end, which is more work than your typical pancake recipe demands. But it's a bit of extra work, because these hotcakes are lovely, pillowy, and light.

For best results, use the freshest whole milk ricotta cheese you can find. Or, if you're in the mood for something really special, try making your own. It's easily done, and takes about 45 minutes from start to finish.

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Lemon and Ricotta Pancakes

Ingredients:

250g/9oz ricotta cheese 4 tbsp golden caster sugar 3 Large eggs, separated Finely grated rind of 1 lemon 2 tbsp melted butter 55g/2oz plain flour

Directions:

1. Mix the ricotta, sugar and egg yolks together in a large bowl. Stir in the lemon zest and melted butter, then the flour too.

2. Whisk the egg whites in a separate bowl until they form soft peaks. Gently fold the egg whites into the ricotta mixture.

3. Put a non-stick frying pan onto medium heat and dollop on heaped tablespoons of the mixture, allowing room for spread. Cook for 1-2 minutes or until the underside is coloured then turn over and cook for another 2 minutes.

4. Serve with warmed raspberry conserve or simply a dusting of powdered sugar and slices of lemon. Enjoy!

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