Lemon Ricotta Pancakes with Raspberries and Lemon Curd

I made this recipe for a church youth activity. We had a Top Chef pancake cook-off and one of the girls suggested we make lemon ricotta pancakes, but she forgot to email the recipe to me. So, I made this one up. My team of girls ended up winning first place by adding the raspberries and lemon curd. This pancake is perfect for a special brunch. I'm definately making this for my bookclub.

For the pancakes:

1 1/2 cups flour
4 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
1 tablespoon lemon zest
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup ricotta cheese

lemon curd (recipe follows)
raspberry sauce (recipe follows)
fresh whipped cream

In a small bowl, combine all of the dry ingredients and whisk them together. Set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the eggs, oil, buttermilk, zest, vanilla, and ricotta cheese. Using a whisk or a hand held mixer, combine these ingredients until they are well mixed. Add the dry ingredients 1/2 cup at a time until everything is combined.

Spray a skillet with non-stick spray and drop the batter using a 1/4 measuring cup. Cook until you see little bubbles form on the surface and then flip.

To serve, spread each pancake with about 1 tablespoon of lemon curd, a dollop of whipping cream, topped with the raspberry sauce. (Both of those recipes follow but you can also substitute frozen raspberries in syrup (heated to make a sauce), and purchased lemon curd).

Raspberry sauce:

1 carton fresh raspberries
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons lemon juice

Place the above ingredients in a small pot and cook over a medium high heat until the sugar has melted.

Lemon Curd:

5 egg yolks
1 cup sugar
4 lemons, zested and juiced
1 stick butter, cut into pats and chilled

Add enough water to a medium saucepan to come about 1-inch up the side. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Meanwhile, combine egg yolks and sugar in a medium size metal bowl and whisk until smooth, about 1 minute. Measure citrus juice and if needed, add enough cold water to reach 1/3 cup. Add juice and zest to egg mixture and whisk smooth. Once water reaches a simmer, reduce heat to low and place bowl on top of saucepan. (Bowl should be large enough to fit on top of saucepan without touching the water.) Whisk until thickened, approximately 8 minutes, or until mixture is light yellow and coats the back of a spoon. Remove promptly from heat and stir in butter a piece at a time, allowing each addition to melt before adding the next. Remove to a clean container and cover by laying a layer of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the curd. Refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.

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