Homemade Ricotta

A few weeks ago, when uploading recipes onto Plan to Eat, a meal-planning website I am trying out, I came across a recipe on Epicurious for ricotta cheese. I have been fascinated by the possibility of making cheese at home ever since I read that it was possible in Animal, Vegetable, Miracle. Since then, I’ve made paneer (an Indian cheese) and yogurt. When I saw the simple recipe for ricotta , I couldn’t repress the urge to try it. Plus, by making it myself I could use cruelty-free dairy products, like this.

I measured 8 cups of whole milk and two cups of buttermilk into a large pot. I stuck in my digital thermometer, turned on the heat, and started stirring. The curds will separate from the whey at between 175 and 180*F.

I got a little excited at this point and didn’t take a picture until I had drained the curds in my colander lined with four layers of cheesecloth. Comments on Epicurious warned against squeezing too much water out, so I was careful. However, it still turned out a little dry. I would recommend the no-squeeze method where whatever comes out when you handle it comes out. I let it sit like this for 20 minutes.

After 20 minutes, it looked like this.

I stirred in some salt and put it in a container to refrigerate overnight.

This took about 30 minutes total. I was amazed that such a snooty type of cheese was so easy to make!

The ricotta itself was fine, although it was a little obscured by the less-than-stellar meal I used it in. This is the one I promised to write about yesterday and failed to follow through on. I know you’ve been sitting at your computer all day waiting for that post, but I’m sorry to say it’s not coming today. Ricotta needed to come first, and you’re kind of done reading, and then you wouldn’t appreciate my meal failure/success story rolled into one. And I’m really proud of myself for not wasting my leftovers, and I want you to be proud of me too.

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4 thoughts on “Homemade Ricotta

    • Thanks! I expected to get a lot since I used 10 cups of milk total, but I think I got about the equivalent of a standard 12 oz. container. I was expecting to save a little money by making it, but I think I spent about the same as I would have on any other cruelty-free dairy product.

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