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Old 06-29-2009, 07:11 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Location: hic et ubique
make your own ricotta cheese

no, it's not that difficult.

yeah its a lot easier and quicker to just go buy it, but making it yourself is fun, and it does have a certain texture and flavor you don't get from store bought.

if you really like ricotta cheese, i think it's worth trying just once, just to do it. the only "downside" to making it is it takes an assload of milk for a little bit of ricotta. but it's homemade and fresh, so you got that going for you.


line a strainer or colander with 4 layers of cheese cloth.

you need to bring 8 cups of WHOLE milk and 1 teaspoon + a bit more of salt to a simmer. once simmering, stir in 3 tablespons of FRESH (right out of the lemon, not from a bottle) lemon juice. simmer for another 2-3 minutes, letting curds form.

skim the floating curds with a slotted spoon and put them in the cheese cloth. keep doing this until there are no more curds formed.

let curds drain for a minute, put in a bowl, and put in refrigerator for a few hours.

you have home made ricotta.



mix it with spinach and nutmeg and a beaten egg and stuff pasta shells, or make lasagna, or use it in a pizza with mozerella, or put honey on it and chopped nuts.

do whatever you do with ricotta. enjoy.
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Old 06-30-2009, 08:14 AM   #2 (permalink)
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It's impossible to find ricotta in Japan, so I've been making my own for a while now. It's really easy and the results are so worth it. A couple of things to add to squeeeb's recipe: heat the milk slowly and stir it occasionally to prevent scorching. Keep the temp to 180-190 degrees F. Lemon juice is great, especially if you're planning to use the cheese for desserts, but any acid will work. I usually use white vinegar, and in a pinch cider vinegar. Also, if you're going to use it for desserts, omit the salt. You can let the milk/vinegar mix cool for a couple of hours, and pour it slowly through the cheesecloth if you don't have a mesh or slotted spoon. If you save the watery part (the buttermilk), you can use it to make other dishes as a substitute for water. The more you stir the curds, the smaller they will be. If you let the curds drain too long, they will become dry, but you can just add back in some of the buttermilk, or any milk, to make them the right consistency for stuffing shells or other pasta. Give it a try!
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