This has probably been one of my favorite discoveries. I love ricotta cheese and use it in many recipes. I had no idea how easy it as to make. Now we make it frequently! The way I show you how to make it is perfect for classic loose ricotta, like the kind you would use in a lasagna. But I let it drain longer to be served as an appetizer. It is such an impressive and delicious appetizer or side dish that takes no time at all. It’s also so much less expensive then store bought ricotta cheese.
The first thing you want to do is prepare your strainer. I put a strainer on top of a bowl with a couple layers of cheesecloth.
Next in a nonreactive pot, pour in 4 cups of milk, 3/4 cup buttermilk, 1 cup cream and 1 tablespoon of salt. Sometimes I haven’t’ had cream and I just use an additional cup of milk which works fine. The end result just doesn’t taste as creamy.
You’re going to boil the milk until it begins to form curds. It will get pretty hot and then you will see little curds forming. You can see it on the spoon here.
When it has been curdled for a couple minutes pour it into your cheesecloth where you will separate the curds from the whey (the liquid).
Now if you want to use it for lasgana or another recipe that calls for it you only need to strain it for a couple minutes. But what I do is let it drain for about 10 minutes. Then I wrap up the cheese cloth on top and let it stain for an additional couple of hours, until it could be cut without breaking apart. I leave it out to drain because I can’t stand cold cheese. It taste much better served at room temperature or slightly warm. If you make it ahead of time just take it out to get it to room temperature before you serve it.
Then when it’s firm, I unwrap it and put it on a plate. I pour nice olive oil over it with some sea salt and serve it as an appetizer with fresh homemade focaccia or bread. It taste mild and creamy. It’s definitely a household staple. I hope you try it!
Tags: DIY, homemade ricotta, ricotta cheese
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