6:29 pm - Friday, January 17 2020
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easy-to-make homemade ricotta

easy to make, homemade ricotta cheeseIt all began with a bag of shelled green peas.  I was thinking sautéed spring vegetables with pasta; the Italians call it primavera.  But, I did not want to use traditional pasta such as linguine, penne, or tagliatelle.  And, I had a yearning for some sort of fresh sauce, too, in lieu of a creamy one.  The bag of peas held the answer to my quest.  The Flavor Bible, which I frequently refer to, suggested peas, mushrooms and ricotta cheese.  The aha moment was when my eyes read ricotta cheese.  I have made fresh ricotta before but when I saw Serious Eats used the microwave to make their ricotta, I had to give it a bash.

The result?  A simply luxurious-tasting cheese!  So smooth and delicate there was little effort to slather the ricotta onto a grilled piece of sourdough bread.  This was going to be the crowning glory for my pasta dish…I’ll share that recipe on my next posting.

3 cups whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon sea salt flakes
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

To make the ricotta, line a large fine-mesh metal strainer with a triple layer of cheesecloth large enough to hang over the edges. Set this over a large bowl. Pour milk and cream into a large pyrex measuring cup or glass bowl. Add sea salt and lemon juice; give it a quick stir.  Place in microwave and cook on high 4 to 6 minutes until milk becomes steamy and frothy/bubbly around the edges (should read 185f on a thermometer).

Remove from microwave and give it a gentle stir.  If curds haven’t separated, place back in the microwave and cook another 1 to 2 minutes.  Use a ladle and spoon cheese curds into the cheesecloth-lined strainer.  Allow to drain.  When cooled to room temperature, scoop out cheese and place in a serving dish.

The Culinary Chase’s Note:  Ricotta will keep well, refrigerated, up to 1 week.  The longer it stays in the fridge, the firmer it becomes.  Enjoy!

About Heather Chase

The Culinary Chase was coined by my husband whilst in a coffee shop in Hong Kong back in 2006. We wanted something that would be a play on my last name and by the time we finished our coffee, the name was born. As long as I can remember I’ve enjoyed cooking. It wasn’t until we moved to Asia that I began to experiment using herbs and spices in my everyday cooking. Not only do they enhance the flavor of food but also heighten it nutritionally. Over the years, I began to change our diet to include more vegetables, pulses, whole grains and less red meat. Don’t get me wrong, we love our meat, just not in super-size portions (too hard for the body to digest). I always use the palm of my hand as a guide to portion control when eating red meat. If the meat is larger than my hand, I save that portion for another day. Also, if the veggies on your plate look colorful (think the colors of the rainbow) – red, green, yellow, orange etc. then you’re most likely getting the right amount of nutrients per meal. I post recipes that I think help maintain a healthy body. I use the 80/20 rule – 80% of the time I make a conscious effort to eat healthy and 20% for when I want french fries with gravy (poutine). Balance is the key and to enjoy life with whatever comes my way. Thanks for visiting!


The views and opinions expressed in this content are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of haligonia.ca.


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