Pesto Ricotta Torte – Recipe

This colorful torte with its layers of red sun-dried tomatoes, creamy white cheese, and zesty green pesto makes a festive appetizer for a large group, or a special Mediterranean-style treat for you and your family. Mouthwatering flavors combined with calcium and vitamin-rich nutrition make Pesto Ricotta Torte a recipe you will use again and again.

So pretty, it looks as if you fussed over it for hours, but it’s easy to make:


24 ounces ricotta cheese
½ cup grated Parmagiano-Reggiano cheese
½ cup minced parsley
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 ¼ pounds thin provolone cheese slices, about 5 inches in diameter
1 recipe Pesto Pesto (see below) or substitute 1 cup store-bought pesto
¾ cup sun-dried tomatoes packed in olive oil, chopped
6-8 large opal or green basil leaves for garnish

1. Allow ricotta to warm up to room temperature 20 minutes, or until it is pliable with a fork. In a medium bowl, blend the ricotta, Parmagiano-Reggiano, and parsley. If you wish to make the ricotta mixture a day in advance of assembly, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to use.

2. Brush a 5-inch by 9-inch oblong bread pan with the oil, or line it with plastic wrap. Line the sides, ends, and bottom of the pan with 8-10 slices of the provolone. Spoon one-half of the ricotta mixture on the bottom of the pan, followed by one half of the Pesto Pesto, then one-half of the tomatoes. Top with 2-3 provolone slices.

3. Continue to layer the remaining ricotta, Pesto Pesto, and tomatoes, then top with the remaining 3-4 slices of provolone. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate 8-10 hours to allow the flavors to cure.

4. When ready to serve, remove the pan from the refrigerator, invert it onto a serving platter, and gently tap the sides and top with the handle of a butter knife. The torte will slide out of the pan easily. Garnish the top of the torte with basil and serve with crostini or crackers.

Serves 15-20.



2 cups tightly packed Genovese basil
1/3 cup tightly packed lemon basil
2 cloves garlic
½ cup grated Parmagiano-Reggiano cheese
2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly-ground green peppercorns
¼ cup toasted pine nuts, optional

1. In a blender or food processor, combine the basils, garlic, and cheese until slightly chunky. With the motor running, gradually add the oil until completely blended.

2. Transfer to a small bowl, then whisk in the salt and pepper until well blended. If desired, add the pine nuts for a more intense pesto.

Yields 1 cup and may be used on practically ANYTHING!

Adapted from The Onion Harvest Cookbook by Barbara Ciletti (The Taunton Press, 1998). Copyright (c) 1998 by Barbara Ciletti. Reprinted by permission of Taunton Press.
Adapted from The Onion Harvest Cookbook by Barbara Ciletti (The Taunton Press, 1998).


Elena T.
Elena Poensgen4 years ago

Thank you :)

Donna Hamilton
Donna Hamilton5 years ago

Thanks for the recipe.

J.L. A.
j A5 years ago


J.L. A.
j A5 years ago


Michele Wilkinson

Thank you

Jennifer C.
Past Member 6 years ago

Thank you.

Lynn C.
Lynn C6 years ago

If it's something from Annie's pen, you can bet I'll try it.

Robert O.
Robert O6 years ago


Bon L.
Bon L7 years ago

Thanks for the info.

K s Goh
KS Goh7 years ago

Thanks for the article.