When it comes to making things from scratch, I will have to admit that sometimes I am just plain intimidated! Brownie, corn muffin (hey, a 40 cent box of Jiffy really is hard to beat!) and cake mixes have followed me throughout my life. Yes, I have tried to make each and every one of them from scratch, yet the ease of having something quick on hand makes things simpler sometimes.
Well, the thought (yes, even the mere thought) of making something like my own cheese has never even crossed my radar screen. That is until I went on a trip to Pittsfield, Vermont to experience a lovely weekend of adventure, touring and mingling with other bloggers and professionals. One of the activities during our stay was learning how to make cheese, and I dare say that SO many of us were truly excited about learning.
Rebecca of Sweet Georgia P’s Farm (check them out here) was our instructor, and the process of making ricotta cheese at home really is much easier than I thought. And it is truly delicious. She let us taste it two ways… both savory (in a rustic pie with chunks of butternut squash) and sweet (with a drizzle of freshly made blueberry sauce). The fact that it blends with so many flavors is definitely a plus about ricotta. I hope that you enjoy this recipe from Rebecca accompanied by photos compliments of Mary Dougherty Photography.
Richard Ferretti’s Fresh Ricotta – from Gourmet 2006
- 2 quarts whole milk (they used raw milk from their goats)
- 1 cup heavy cream (again, from their goats)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
- To ready your area, line a large sieve with a layer of heavy duty (fine mesh) cheesecloth, and place it over a large bowl.
- Slowly bring milk, cream and salt to a rolling boil in a 6 quart heavy pot over moderate heat, stirring constantly to avoid scorching.
- Add lemon juice, then reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring constantly, until the mixture curdles (about 2 minutes).
- Pour the mixture into the lined sieve, and let it drain one hour.
- After discarding the liquid, chill the ricotta, covered. It will keep in the refrigerator for 2 days.
I hope you enjoy Mary’s photos below. Just to clarify, Rebecca had some ricotta ready to show us before she started making some from scratch. You also get to meet some of the goats at the end who produce the milk. Fun!
Special thanks to:
Amee Farm – their hospitality and kitchen for the class
Mary Dougherty Photography – photos
Sweet Georgia P’s Farm – recipe, cheese making class and tasting