I teach high school seniors who are in the 2nd year of a two year culinary program at a career center. This means they spend half their school day at their traditional high school and half the day with me. About two-thirds of my students will go on to culinary school, while the remaining students will decide that food service is not the career path for them. I consider both outcomes as positive. Sometimes knowing what you don't want to do is as important as knowing what you do.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Make Your Own Ricotta

One of the things I really want to teach my students is an understanding of the basics, an appreciation of food and where it comes from. To this end, I thought I'd have them make cheese.

Making Fresh Cheese

1 qt whole milk
1 c active-culture buttermilk
2 t lemon juice or white vinegar, more if needed
¾ t salt, or to taste

Pour milk into heavy-bottomed saucepan and place over low heat.

Stir regularly, but not constantly, until milk reaches temp of 175°.

When you reach temp, add buttermilk and lemon juice.  

Remove from heat.  Stir gently.

Sit undisturbed for 10 minutes.

Line colander with 4 layers of cheesecloth, and place over bowl or pot.

Ladle cheesecloth into colander.

Drain for 5 minutes.

Gather cheesecloth & tie with string.  Tie it to spoon over colander and drain for 30 minutes.

Remove from cheesecloth.  Mix in salt.

Can be eaten immediately, or chill overnight.

Option:  Mix in favorite herbs and seasonings to flavor.

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