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Old 09-26-2006, 07:37 AM   #11
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And how long does it take to home make ricotta? Milk goes for rather cheap in these parts, and i would love to try it...
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Old 09-26-2006, 07:55 AM   #12
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I have two favorite recipes I mainly use. My current most favorite recipe takes 1 1/2 days to make and uses freshly cultured buttermilk, so if you count making the buttermilk, then it takes 2 1/2 days to make.

Another excellent for cooking ricotta takes under one hour to make. Heat one gallon of whole milk to 206 degrees F, gently stir in 1/4 cup vinegar. Drain curds and whey through a cheesecloth lined colander for two minutes. Put the curds in a bowl and stir in 3 tablespoons of melted butter and 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda. Mix thoroughly. This mixing will loosen the curds, distribute the butter and make a fine ricotta for cooking or baking. One gallon of milk will make just under one pound of cheese. You can use it immediately or store, covered, in the frig, or freeze it. This is the recipe I use most for lasagna type dishes. I use a stand mixer to incorporate the eggs, parmesan and mozzarella cheese as well as the pepper, parsley and whatever else I add to the cheese mixture.
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Old 09-26-2006, 08:08 AM   #13
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Quote:
Another excellent for cooking ricotta takes under one hour to make. Heat one gallon of whole milk to 206 degrees F, gently stir in 1/4 cup vinegar. Drain curds and whey through a cheesecloth lined colander for two minutes.
After you add the vinegar, how long is it until you drain the curds, bethzaring? This looks too interesting not to give it a try.
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Old 09-26-2006, 08:39 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Half Baked
After you add the vinegar, how long is it until you drain the curds, bethzaring? This looks too interesting not to give it a try.
No time at all. This is considered an acid coagulation, as opposed to the more lengthy rennet coagulation. The curds will coagulate as soon as you stir in the vinegar.
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Old 09-26-2006, 12:22 PM   #15
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It is basically cottage cheese--my mother used to make it all the time when we "got ahead" on milk.


The following recipe represents the ultimate in simplicity in cheese making. It will produce a delicious cottage cheese that resembles ricotta and is excellent fresh or used in cooking Italian dishes such as lasagna. We recommend that beginners start with a cottage cheese to get the feel for the basics and for the instant gratification of being able to enjoy the product immediately.
Ingredients:


1 gallon 2% milk
1/2 cup vinegar
1 tsp salt



1. Heat the milk to 190F. You will need a thermometer for other cheeses but you can get by here turning off the heat just before the milk begins to boil.
2. Add the vinegar and allow the mixture to cool.
3. When cool, pour the mixture, (which now consists of curds and whey as in Miss Muffet food) into a colander and drain off the whey.
4. Pour the curds into a bowl and sprinkle on the salt and mix well. You may wish to use less salt or more. It is simply a matter of taste which is the next step. You can add a little cream for a silky texture.
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Old 09-26-2006, 01:25 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gretchen
It is basically cottage cheese--my mother used to make it all the time when we "got ahead" on milk.


The following recipe represents the ultimate in simplicity in cheese making. It will produce a delicious cottage cheese that resembles ricotta and is excellent fresh or used in cooking Italian dishes such as lasagna. We recommend that beginners start with a cottage cheese to get the feel for the basics and for the instant gratification of being able to enjoy the product immediately.
Ingredients:


1 gallon 2% milk
1/2 cup vinegar
1 tsp salt



1. Heat the milk to 190F. You will need a thermometer for other cheeses but you can get by here turning off the heat just before the milk begins to boil.
2. Add the vinegar and allow the mixture to cool.
3. When cool, pour the mixture, (which now consists of curds and whey as in Miss Muffet food) into a colander and drain off the whey.
4. Pour the curds into a bowl and sprinkle on the salt and mix well. You may wish to use less salt or more. It is simply a matter of taste which is the next step. You can add a little cream for a silky texture.

Yes, Gretchen, I've certainly made my share of cottage cheese with the recipe you posted. And my experience with this recipe is that I get a rather chewy, almost rubbery product that is quite dry.

The recipe I posted uses a different technique. The curd does not cool in the whey. The curd goes straight into the draining mode, which is quite short. In fact it is so short that sometimes I stand at the sink and hold the bag for the 2 minutes. The cheese will drain better if it is hung, rather than just sitting in the colander. Also, it can be tricky getting the curd out of the bag into the bowl to stir in the butter, because the curd is so hot.

I recommend reading up on cheesemaking before trying to make even the simplest cheeses. There are so many nuances to making cheese that I could not possibly give all the tips needed in these posts.
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Old 09-26-2006, 03:46 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bethzaring
Yes, Gretchen, I've certainly made my share of cottage cheese with the recipe you posted. And my experience with this recipe is that I get a rather chewy, almost rubbery product that is quite dry.

The recipe I posted uses a different technique. The curd does not cool in the whey. The curd goes straight into the draining mode, which is quite short. In fact it is so short that sometimes I stand at the sink and hold the bag for the 2 minutes. The cheese will drain better if it is hung, rather than just sitting in the colander. Also, it can be tricky getting the curd out of the bag into the bowl to stir in the butter, because the curd is so hot.

I recommend reading up on cheesemaking before trying to make even the simplest cheeses. There are so many nuances to making cheese that I could not possibly give all the tips needed in these posts.

Then I am glad I posted it so you could mention this difference in not letting it sit very long and getting a better result. Glad for the extra information since the rest of the recipe is so similar. Yes, cheesemaking is not always just a cut and dried recipe.
But this does also reinforce for our original poster that cottage cheese is quite an acceptable sub for ricotta when the latter isn't available.
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Old 09-26-2006, 05:31 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ardor
Would adding white wine make it melt smoother?
White wine is not a 'usual' ingredient of lasagna.
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Old 09-26-2006, 07:17 PM   #19
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As far as a substitute for Ricotta I tend to go along with our excellent cooks and chefs and use cottage cheese.
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Old 09-26-2006, 09:08 PM   #20
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Thank you Beth and Gretchen! I've put this thread under favorites so I can try it on a quiet day.
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