Ricotta and Rosemary Bread Pudding

400g loaf white sourdough
200g ricotta
90g parmesan, or vegetarian substitute, grated
1½ tsp chopped rosemary leaves
20g chives, finely chopped
800ml milk
250ml  cream
2 cloves garlic, minced
¼ tsp nutmeg
8 medium eggs
Olive oil, to finish
Place bread in 80C oven for 1 hour.
Combine ricotta, parmesan, chives and rosemary.
Spread cheese mixture onto bread.
Combine milk, cream, eggs, garlic, nutmeg, salt and pepper.
Prepare a 22cm x 29cm ovenproof dish by buttering and flouring, or lining with baking paper.
Place the bread cheese side up in the dish, overlapping and standing them up to fit.
Pour the egg mixture over until it just reaches the top. Allow to stand at least and hour. The bread will soak up the liquid, so top it up before you cook it. But don't cover the top of the bread. Part of the charm of this dish is a crunchy top.
Bake at 180C for 30 mins, or until the top is crusty. Be careful not to overcook because the egg mixture will separate.

Cream of Lettuce and Pea Soup

It sounds odd with cooked iceberg lettuce, but is actually one of my favourite soups of all time.  Serve either hot or cold. Adapted from Gretta Anna Teplitzky

250g frozen baby peas
1 large potato, peeled and sliced
1 onion, sliced
1 iceberg lettuce, cut into 8 pieces
750mls chicken stock
Juice ½ lemon
300mls cream
2 tablespoons chives
Mint from 4 sprigs
Place stock, onion, potato and lemon juice into a saucepan and simmer for 15 mins, or until potato is tender.
Add peas and lettuce and simmer just until the lettuce is soft.
Puree in a blender, then pass through a seive.
Add cream and serve hot or chilled.