Cottage Cheese & Ham “Malfatti”

Cottage Cheese Malfatti

Left overs, a curse or a blessing? A friend of mine doesn’t like left overs. I can’t quite get to the bottom of why but I love them. They usually mean I don’t have to do too much cooking and it is always a challenge to transform them to a new dish.

I had some left over ham, just enough for a sandwich but not enough for a meal for two. I also had a stale roll and cottage cheese.

I looked at my ingredients and thought about Malfatti. I liked the idea of using cottage cheese, one of my favourite ingredients, instead of ricotta. I did a quick fridge raid and found a small handful of french beans that I thought would go well with the ham and cottage cheese.\

I have cooked a more traditional Malfatti before using wild garlic, you can find the recpie here.


Cottage cheese and ham malfatti ingredients


Cottage Cheese & Ham “Malfatti”

preparation time 10 minutes 

cooking time about 5 minutes 

serves 2


  • 250 gr or 8.8 oz cottage cheese
  • 1 stale white bread roll
  • 1 heaped tbsp 00 flour
  • 1/2 dl or 1/4 cup shredded ham
  • a small handful of french beans
  • 1 clove of garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1 tsp sumac
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp paprika powder
  • 1/4 tsp chilli powder from the Spice Kitchen
  • 1/4 tsp crushed black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground allspice

Place the beans in a pan with water and bring to a boil. Cook the beans for 3-4 minutes and place them in iced, or cold water. Let them cool whilst making the Malfatti and slice them quite fine.

Roughly chop the stale bread and place it in the blender. Blend until you have fairly fine crumbs. Add the cottage cheese, flour, garlic and spices and blend until the mix has a paste like consistency.

Place the mixture in a bowl with the ham and the sliced beans and mix. Roll the mixture in to small balls. Bring a pan filled with water to a boil and reduce the heat to simmer. Place the malfatti in the water, they are ready when they come up to the surface, you can give them a gentle stir if they don’t come to the surface.


I served the Malfatti with a spicy tomato sauce and a drizzle of olive oil.


Cottage Cheese Malfatti


I was worried it wouldn’t be enough food but there was plenty. I know they are not traditional Malfatti but what a left over treat and a great way to make a little meat and some stale bread go a long way. It is a very frugal dish but it is rich in flavour and delicious enough for a dinner party.


I am bringing this to the lovely Angie’s Fiesta Friday. It has been a bit hectic here lately and I haven’t made it but no week is the same without my favourite foodie party! Come and have a look, it will make you hungry!

This week she has two lovely co hosts, Judi, Cookingwithauntjuju, check out her spicy pickles! What a great way to preserve the harvest. The other host is Debanita, Canvassed Recpies, her coriander rice looks so delicious, what a perfect dish for darker and colder evenings!

I am also sharing this with Whats for Dinner, hosted by the great Helen, The Lazy Gastronome who has a range of delicious and inspiring recpies!









14 Responses to “Cottage Cheese & Ham “Malfatti””
  1. Laura says:

    Leftovers are always a blessing in our house Petra – they just don’t happen often enough as we’re both fans of clean plates! Unless of course I intentionally make a giant batch of something!

  2. Traditional or not they look delicious Petra. I had to look up Malfatti and saw it’s Italian for dumplings. As always you have made a recipe “your own” and very unique. Cottage cheese? and I love the addition of sumac. Thanks for sharing a special recipe with Fiesta Friday!

    • petra08 says:

      hi Judi
      Thank you! They are lighter than English dumplings and using the traditional ricotta makes for firmer dumplings. I love cottage cheese and wanted something healthy. Cottage cheese and sumac worked a treat together!
      Thank you for co hosting Fiesta Friday! x

  3. Perfectly executed, Petra, as always! I love the idea of transforming leftovers into a new dish. I’ve been thinking of gnudi lately, which is just another name for malfatti. Good to know cottage cheese can also make great malfatti; I’ve always used ricotta.

    • petra08 says:

      hi Angie
      Ricotta makes for a firmer malfatti, it might be worth adding a little bit more flour but the taste was all there!
      Gnudi is delicious! I didn’t even think that they are the same thing but of course they are! This is a great way to use up left overs as well 🙂 x

  4. helenfern says:

    This looks interestingly good! I’d be honored if you shared this at our What’s for Dinner party.

    • petra08 says:

      hi Helen
      Thank you for stopping by and I am glad you like it! I have added my lik to your party, thank you so much for the invite!
      I hope you have a good week 🙂 x

  5. Veronica Lee says:

    Yummm! They look delish! I’d love to try this!

  6. Lovely share Petra! I loved the idea of using the leftovers. Thanks for sharing at Fiesta Friday!

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