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Cuccia (Wheat berries, dried fruit, and ricotta)
This is an adaptation of a recipe and traditional dish from southern Italy (i.e. Naples or Sicily, depending on which recipes you look up) that can be eaten as a breakfast, brunch or dessert. Here I have taken advantage of the last of our delicious citrus for both its zest and juice, ricotta, as well as fresh wheat berries and local honey. Feel free to adapt with various dried or fresh fruits, nuts or even shaved chocolate!
- 1 CSA bag uncooked wheat berries
- 1 stick cinnamon (or sprinkled ground cinnamon)
- 1-2 small oranges, their peel, zest and juice
- 1/2 cup dried fruits (raisins, cranberries, cherries, etc)
- 1 cup orange juice (freshly squeezed if you have enough, separate from oranges above)
- 1/4 cup chopped nuts (optional)
- 1 cup ricotta (or greek yogurt)
- Honey to taste
Cook the wheat berries in plenty of water to cover the berries by a few inches (as you would cook pasta) with the cinnamon stick for flavor. You can also add one long peel from an orange to the cooking water. Cook at a low boil for about 30-40 minutes or until “al dente.”
While the wheat berries cook, soak the dried fruit in the orange juice until they absorb most of the liquid.
Drain the wheat berries and let cool (this step can be done in advance) and add to a mixing bowl. Add the dried fruit plus its juice. Add zest from the oranges and squeeze out their juice directly into the bowl. Add nuts, if using. Stir in ricotta and honey to taste until you have a creamy consistency. Enjoy!
Submitted by Daniela Diamente, Tucson CSA