Making your own ricotta can be a cinch!
DIY projects are no longer reserved for housewives and kindergarten teachers. Not only do they save some cash, there's a sweet sense of accomplishment in making everyday foods and items right in your own home. Moreover, certain things just seem to taste better when made by hand.
Take, for instance, ricotta cheese. This grainy spread may not seem all that appetizing when sitting in a plastic tub, laced with sodium and preservatives. But when made at home, ricotta is a rich, creamy, versatile ingredient.
If you want to make about a cup of ricotta, you should start out with 3 cups of whole milk, 1 cup of heavy cream, one-half of a teaspoon of salt and 3 tablespoons of lemon juice.
First, add everything but the lemon juice to a three-quart saucepan and bring the ingredients almost to a boil - about 180 degrees F. Now add your lemon juice and let the mixture sit for about five minutes until it looks all curdled and gross.
To make it look more appetizing, pour it through a colander lined with cheesecloth. Let that stuff sit in there for an hour and - voila! - rich, creamy ricotta. The longer you let it drain in the colander, the firmer it will be, as gravity is bound to work its wonders.
You'll be happy to know that this delish cheese is good for way more than layering in lasagna! It's fab on Florentine Pizza with Seasoned Oil, spread on bread, as a dip for veggies, in an omelet and is even excellent in sweet dishes like Lemon Ricotta Cheesecake. I know, I know, more sweets. If you’re looking for something quick and healthier, these Tiramisu Parfaits is the way to go. You'll pretty much find that this stuff is amazing dolloped on top of just about anything.