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Big Kitchen Recipes - Smoked ricotta, spinach and radish open sandwich

In the third of our monthly series of seasonal recipes, Parham’s chef Neil Rusbridger creates a delightful open sandwich with homemade ricotta and homegrown spinach and radishes.

This is a delicious and summery lunch dish that was a popular feature on the Big Kitchen menu last year. Make double the amount of cheese (perfect if you have some leftover milk) and keep in the fridge. Lovely in a salad with some smoked salmon, trout or mackerel.

16th June 2020

Big Kitchen Recipes – Smoked ricotta, spinach and radish open sandwich

Serves 2 


300 g ricotta (bought, or see below to make your own), or a soft smoked cheese

A little mayonnaise (if ricotta is too firm)

4-5 thinly sliced radishes, mixed colours if possible

50g diced, sliced or chopped cucumber, deseeded

1 bunch chives, chopped (optional)

Salt and pepper, to taste

Baby spinach leaves, or salad of your choice

2 slices Danish rye bread, buttered


Combine cream cheese and mayonnaise in a large bowl until mixed.

Add half of each radish, cucumber, and chopped chives and then stir to combine.

Allow the mixture to sit in the fridge for an hour or so to let the flavours blend.

Place a few spinach leaves on top each buttered slice of Danish rye bread. Then top with a couple of heaped tablespoons of the ricotta mix and then garnish with sliced radish and chopped chives.

Ricotta style cheese:


1.5l whole milk

20ml white or cider vinegar

Small pinch sea salt (or to taste)

Liquid smoke (to taste)


Pour the milk into a medium saucepan, and heat until the temperature reaches 195 degrees F (90 degrees C), or almost boiling. Stir constantly to prevent scorching. When the milk reaches the temperature, remove from the heat, and stir in the vinegar. Let stand for 10 minutes.

Line a strainer with cheesecloth and set over a large suitable sized bowl. The milk should separate into a white solid part, and a yellowish liquid (whey). Stir the salt into the milk, then pour through the cloth-lined strainer. Let the curds continue to drain in the strainer for 1 hour.

Use the whey to make scones or bread.

After the cheese has finished draining, pat into a ball, and remove from the cheesecloth. Check for seasoning and add the liquid smoke.

Wrap in plastic and store in the fridge until ready to use. This cheese will usually last about a week.