Homemade Ricotta Cheese Recipe | U MAIN kits
Preparation time: 30 mins
Serving size: 550g (approx.)
Cauldron of at least 4 L in stainless steel (non-reactive).
Glass (or cup).
Spoons: 1 teaspoon and 1 large.
2 large bowls.
Cheese thermometer (included).
Reusable cheesecloth (included).
Faisselle (mould; included).
6 clothes pegs (optional).
4 liters of milk (cow or goat, Prefer 3.25%. NOT ultrapasteurized or UHT. Can be lactose-free).
2 teaspoons of citric acid (included).
1 cup of chlorine-free water (see recommendations).
1 ½ teaspoon of cheese salt (included).
1. Mix the citric acid in the cup of water.
2. Pour the milk into the cauldron and add the mixture. Stir for 5-10 sec.
3. Heat over medium heat. Stir gently and from time to time so that the milk does not stick to the bottom of the cauldron.
4. After a few minutes, using the large spoon, you should see flakes of coagulated (curd) milk separate from the whey (greenish-yellow liquid). If they don't form, remix some citric acid and water and add it gradually, stirring until flakes appear.
5. Heat the milk to 85 - 90º C** (don't let it boil!). Then, turn off the heat and put the lid on the cauldron for 10 minutes. The curd (coagulated milk) and the whey (yellow-greenish liquid) should be completely separated.
6. Spread the cheese cloth in the colander. Use clamps to secure it. Place the colander over the large bowl and set them in a sink. Pour the contents of the cauldron over the cheese cloth. Pass the colander and the cheese from the bowl to the cauldron. Let drain for 5 minutes.
7. Now you have two options:
a) You can let the cheese drain for a few minutes until it reaches the desired texture and eat the ricotta as it is, still warm. You can add cheese salt and spices of your choice, or even honey and fruit. Gently mix them with the ricotta. At this point, you will be able to use it in several recipes.
b) You can mold the cheese. It's very easy. Go to step 8.
8. If you want to mold the cheese: Sprinkle the cheese salt and mix gently. Take the cheese out of the cheese cloth and put it in the strainer. Then, use the bottom of a glass to press it lightly so that it hugs the walls well.
9. Put the strainer in a bowl in the refrigerator and let the cheese drain for the desired time depending on the texture you would like to obtain: 1 hour, it will still be moist, but it will keep its shape; the longer it will be more compact and dry. You might as well get ricotta salata. If this is the result you want, you can follow steps 10 and 11.
10. Put a weight on the ricotta in the mold for 1 hour. Then, unmold the cheese, change sides and press it back into its mold for 12 hours.
11. Unmold the cheese, rub a little cheese salt on its outer surface and put it back in the refrigerator in the strainer. Every day for 1 week, repeat this process. You can increase this time up to 4 weeks! You can eat your cheese at any time during the aging process.
If a little mold appears, rub it gently with the cheese cloth soaked in salt water. If the ricotta gets too wet, pat it dry with the dry cheese cloth and rub it with cheese salt.
12. To keep ricotta fresh, place it in a container with a lid and put it in the refrigerator. It is recommended to consume it within a few days if you do not follow steps 11 and 12, but you can store it for up to 1 week.
** If you want to spread the ricotta on bread, heat it up to 85ºC; to add it to lasagna, cannelloni or cheesecake, heat it to 90ºC.
Tips and tricks :
It is possible to use lactose-free milk for this recipe. To make vegetable ricotta, use soy milk and follow the queso blanco cheese recipe.
When adding the salt, you can add 2 teaspoons of pepper, 1 handful of finely chopped fresh basil, or 2 teaspoons of fresh or dried thyme to the ricotta or queso blanco.
Innovate and experiment with other ingredients, these are your cheeses!
Enjoy your food !
Ricotta and queso blanco kit