Monday, June 8, 2009

Creamy Homemade Ricotta

Also from Food and Wine Magazine:

Ingredients:

2 qts whole cow's milk (preferably organic)
1 C heavy cream (preferably organic)
3 T white vinegar
1/2 tsp white vinegar

Directions:

In a medium pot, warm the milk and cream over moderately high heat until foamy and steaming and the temperature reaches 185 degrees. Do not allow the milk to boil. Remove pan from heat. Add vinegar and stir gently for 30 seconds; the mixture will curdle almost immediately. Add the salt and stir for 30 seconds longer. Cover the pot with a clean towel and let stand at room temperature for 2 hours.

Line a large colander with several layers of cheesecloth, allowing several inches of overhang. Set colander in a large bowl. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the curds to the colander. Carefully gather the corners of the cheesecloth and close with a rubber band. Let the ricotta stand for 30 minutes, gently pressing and squeezing the cheesecloth occasionally to drain off the whey. Transfer the ricotta to a bowl and use immediately, or cover and refrigerate up to 4 days.

NOTE: Instead of cheesecloth, you can use a clean cotton t-shirt, or a plain "flour sack" type of dish towel, or even clean pantyhose. Just make sure that any cloth you use doesn't have any textured surface which might leave shreds of fabric in the cheese.

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