I took the last of the raw milk the other night and made ricotta cheese for the first time! It was so easy and I felt so proud, talk about instant gratification! I followed the recipe I found on The Wednesday Chef and added a little bit of nutmeg in while it was cooking. I also don’t think my candy thermometer works right, because I overcooked the milks and it all came out sort of rubbery – but still edible! And for the first time, I was stoked that I could make cheese right here and not need anything special to do it (like rennet). yay!
I’m going to be gone until Dec 2nd, off to California to visit Rick’s family and traipse around. See you in December! and HAPPY THANKSGIVING!
Fresh Ricotta – Luisa Weiss, The Wednesday Chef
Yields approximately 2 cups–(I halved this recipe)
2 quarts whole milk
2 cups buttermilk
1. Line a wide sieve or colander with cheesecloth, folded so that it is at least 4 layers thick. Place in sink.
2. Pour milk and buttermilk into a heavy-bottomed pot. Cook over high heat, stirring frequently; scrape bottom of pot occasionally to prevent scorching. As milk heats, curds will begin to rise and clump on surface. Once mixture is steaming hot, stop stirring.
3. When mixture reaches 175 to 180 degrees on a candy thermometer, curds and whey will separate. (Whey will look like cloudy gray water underneath a mass of thick white curds.) Immediately turn off heat and gently ladle curds into sieve.
4. When all curds are in sieve and dripping has slowed (about 5 minutes), gently gather edges of cloth and twist to bring curds together; do not squeeze. Let drain 15 minutes more. Discard the whey.
5. Untie cloth and pack ricotta into airtight containers. Refrigerate and use within one week.