I’ve always wanted to try making cheese but just was not inspired to do so until I borrowed this book from the library:
What is interesting about this book is that it is a cookbook without any pictures! Somehow this has not deterred me from wanting to try most of the recipes in it. It also has so many fun stories in it that I didn’t even miss the pictures.
So, let’s get to the cheesemaking part! Ricotta cheese in the grocery store right now is usually a special buy for me because it is so expensive! Today’s batch of ricotta cost around 3 dollars for at least 2 and a 1/2 cups. I used a gallon of whole milk, 6 teaspoons of fresh lemon juice (lemons came from our trees), and 1 tablespoon of white vinegar. Mixed it all together in my largest nonstick pot and brought it up to 200 degrees (I LOVE my candy thermometer). The milk definitely looked curdled at that point. I turned off the heat, let it sit for 20 minutes, then ladled the curds into a cheescloth-lined colander. I let it drain for 20 minutes (I did have to use two bowls for this part because there was so much whey!). Then, the cheese went into a container in the fridge, and the whey went back into the gallon milk jug and also in the fridge to be used for breadmaking (or any baking really). My hubby is the breadmaker so I had him use the whey today to make a loaf of bread in the bread machine.
I did take pictures of some of the process, mostly to remind myself that I actually did this!
I think my next cheesemaking attempt will be mascarpone! I just ordered the tartaric acid I need to make it.