by Caroline

The real name of this dish is a Salvadoran quesadilla, but rather than confuse readers looking for a Salvadoran version of the familiar Mexican dish, I’m giving credit to the mother of José Carlos Ramirez, one of the folks Lynne Anderson interviews in Breaking Bread (click here for my review of the book). José left El Salvador in 2002, and now lives in East Boston with his wife, daughter, mother, sister, and several nephews. A dish like this is a very good way to satisfy a crowd like that. It’s slightly sweet, like a cornbread, so it’s nice for an afternoon snack with tea, and the boys have been eating slices at breakfast, too; but it’s not so sweet that you couldn’t eat it with some stew for dinner. You can also adjust the sugar and parmesan depending on what you plan to serve with the bread.

1 c heavy cream
1/2 c ricotta cheese
1 egg
1/4 c cream cheese, softened
1 T freshly grated parmesan
3/4 c sugar
1 1/2 c harina de arroz (rice flour)
1/4 t salt
1/2 t baking soda
1 T sesame seeds (we didn’t have on hand, so skipped)

Preheat the oven to 350.

Mix the heavy cream, ricotta, egg, cream cheese and parmesan in a large bowl until smooth. Add the sugar and mix well. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, salt and baking soda. Add this to the cream mixture and mix just until the ingredients are incorporated. Spread into a lightly-greased 9-inch cake pan and sprinkle with the sesame seeds. Bake until the cake springs back when touched in the center, about 30 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes before turning out of the pan.

Serve slightly warm or at room temperature.