It’s not a new concept, but fresh bread, fresh cheese and local honey are a perfect combination. It requires a little (albeit very little) work, but it is well worth the effort. Once I witnessed ricotta being made I was convinced that everyone needs to know so they too can feel guilty should they choose to buy it in the store.
Regardless, try making ricotta cheese at least once. It will be fun, you’ll use your hands, and if you flip it out of the cheesecloth like I did into a pretty dish and put it next to a window in natural light you can instagram it like I did. Natural like is much more flattering than any lightbulb in your house, so turn those off so that the color temperatures don’t mix.
The most important part of making cheese is buying good milk. If you know any farmers, talk to them first. If you don’t know any farmers, look for a dairy or coop (I went to Pittsford Farms Dairy for my milk) or head to the organic section of a nice grocery store. Raw would be great, pasteurized is probably what you will find and ultra-pasteurized might not give you the results you want.
Once you get your gallon of milk, take it home and pour half of it (8cups) in a non-reactive pan. Heat it up to 190 degrees, stirring occasionally and use a thermometer – you can’t guess this part. Once it reaches temperature remove from heat and add 6 tablespoons of fresh squeezed lemon juice. Let it sit for 5 minutes and then pour it in to a colander lined with cheesecloth. Take corners of cheesecloth and tie together so the cheese will hang and drip for at least 1 hour. The cheese you see above drained for 1 hour, you can go longer for a thicker consistency.
Since Matt declared this his favorite breakfast a few years ago, I’m planning this for Valentines day morning along with a chemex full of coffee. On that day we won’t have to wait until I take a picture before eating. happy weekend everyone!