Makes 2 to 3 Cups
Ricotta is one of my favorite fresh cheeses. I remember making it with my grandmother on her small farm. She would spread it on a piece of her bread and drizzle i with honey; that was my breakfast. It’s very satisfying to eat the fruit of your labors.
House-made ricotta is prepared daily at Felidia, and it’s really not that difficult for the home cook to do as well. It can be served on toasted bread, to add freshness to our penne “al brucio”, and also works well in a green spring soup. I often have it today as a snack on toasted bread with a small anchovy laid on top.
- 2 quarts whole milk, preferably organic
- 1 cup heavy cream, preferably organic
- 1/2 cup buttermilk
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
Line a large sieve with a double layer of damp cheesecloth and set this over a bowl. Combine the milk, cream, buttermilk, and salt in a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan, and slowly bring to a boil.
Add the lemon juice, and reduce the heat to the lowest setting. Stir gently until the mixture begins to curdle, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat, and let sit without stirring for 5 minutes. Pour the mixture through the cheesecloth, and let drain about 20 to 30 minutes. What’s left in the cloth is the ricotta. Chill until ready to use.
Note: If you don’t get at least a heaping cup of ricotta, you can reheat the liquid and repeat the process, using more lemon juice to recurdle it.