LAST WEEK, as you might recall, I had great fun making mozzarella in only 30 minutes. Well, today I made my first batch of delicious, creamy ricotta. Ricotta is particularly easy to make because it requires only two ingredients — a gallon of whole milk and a teaspoon of citric acid. Here’s the fun process:
Homemade Ricotta Cheese
Ingredients for about 2 pounds of cheese
1 gallon whole milk (homogenized or pasteurized, but not “ultra pasteurized”)
1 tsp. citric acid*
*I bought 8 oz (that’s 48 teaspoons!) of non-gmo citric acid for $5.95 from the New England Cheesemaking Company.
Special Equipment — a stainless steel pot which will hold at least 6 quarts; a thermometer; a colander; a slotted spoon; a piece of butter-muslin (or cheese-cloth) for containing the ricotta as it drains
3. Tie the muslin to form a bag, and hang it to drain. I tied mine to a wooden spoon, as above, and suspended it over a tall mixing bowl. Let drain for 30 minutes or longer, depending on how loose or solid you want the cheese to be. (Mine, after an hour, had a solid but still very creamy consistency.)
And here’s a little ricotta ‘rithmetic. The gallon of local, homogenized milk I used cost $3.02, while the citric acid was 12 cents for one teaspoon. Thus, I paid only $3.14 for two pounds of deliciousness.
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