When I am in Italy, along with mozzarella, the cheese that is never missing from my refrigerator is ricotta.
I use it to dress pasta, to fill cakes, it is delicious as an appetizer together with honey and balsamic vinegar, to spread on bruschetta or, served with fruit, it gives me fantastic breakfasts.
In Italian dairies, it is made daily, using the whey left over from making cheese. This is why it is called ricotta, which, in Italian, means “twice cooked.”
At home, we can make a cheese very similar to ricotta, using only 3 ingredients: whole milk (3% fat), lemon juice and salt.
It is easy and quick to prepare, as well as delicious!
Here’s how to make it.
Ingredients for 350 g cheese
2 l fresh whole milk (3% fat)
10 g fine salt
40 ml of lemon juice
Time: 15 minutes
Pour the milk into a pot and place it over a medium heat, add the salt and bring the milk to boil, stirring continuously.
When the milk is boiling, remove it from the heat, add the juice of the lemon and stir with a spoon.
You will see the curds separating from the whey, creating cheese flakes. If this doesn’t happen after 1 minute add 1/2 spoon more of lemon juice.
Strain the curds from the whey with a slotted spoon and place them in a few layers of cheesecloth, over a bowl.
If you don’t have a cheesecloths, you can also use a fine mesh strainer.
Drain for a few minutes, or longer if you prefer a firmer ricotta. Taste a little to judge the texture. Eat right away or refrigerate for up to 3 days.
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