6.25.2012

Adventures in Cheese Making. Part 1.

So I like cheese.

I'm a fan.

Saturday night, I say to myself, "Yeah, I can make cheese at home."

If I can make bread, bagels, and jam on the regs, I can make cheese. I found a few recipes, one for Ricotta and one for Mozzarella.

Done. Added to the bucket list.

I did a little research and most people say to go to your local homebrew store for the basic supplies. Then I say to Chris "Hey, let's go to More Beer tomorrow so I can get citric acid and rennet for some mozzarella cheese!" At first, he thought I was crazy for wanting to make cheese at home. Then he happily agreed since Calzone Sunday was coming up - and duh, homemade cheese inside the calzones would make them a-mazing.

Sunday morning.

I wake up, make breakfast. Drink lots of yummy coffee. And successfully make Ricotta Cheese. So creamy and rich and glorious!!! It was so easy too.

Then Chris wakes up! "Hey, I just made Ricotta! Let's go get stuff to make mozzarella!! Let's go, let's go!"(me excited like a kid on Christmas)

We get to More Beer.

No rennet.

The guy working said no where in town carries cheese making supplies any more. That means no mozzarella cheese making! Ak! Guess I should I have check before I left the house eh?

We headed next door to Ale Industries and I got out my phone. That guy was right - I couldn't find any place any where near us that sold cheese making stuff. Ak again!

BUT - I did have a successful cheese making day. Because I am still enjoying the heck out of my homemade ricotta cheese. I put it on toast with honey, in my calzone on Sunday night and on some more toast with jam Monday morning. Homemade bread with homemade ricotta with homemade jam - can it get any better?!

In the end, I ordered some supplies online and should get everything in a few days. So the cheese making adventures are far from over.

In the meantime, I've got some ricotta to enjoy! Make some for yourself. Impress your friends. Or hide it from your friends and devour it.


Homemade Rich Ricotta Cheese
3 1/2 cups whole local milk
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon coarse sea salt
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • Pour the milk, cream and salt into a large saucepan. 
  • Attach a candy or deep-fry thermometer and heat the milk on medium heat to 190°F. Stir it occasionally to keep it from burning on the bottom.
  • Remove from heat and add the lemon juice, then stir it once or twice, gently and slowly. Let the pot sit undisturbed for 5 minutes.
  • Line a colander with some cheesecloth and place it over a large bowl (to catch the whey). Pour the curds and whey into the colander and let the curds strain for at least an hour.   
  •  After an hour, its ready to eat! It will become more firm and spreadable as it cools. 
  • Discard the whey, or save it and do one of these! I poured mine into a mason jar and I think I'll make bagels this upcoming weekend. 

Eat the ricotta right away or transfer it to an airtight container and refrigerate until ready to use. Its best within a few days, but last up to a week.

Enjoy!

Erica

2 comments:

  1. Coincidentally, I am eating a big hunk of cambozola right now... also a fan. :) Love this post- *definitely* going to try this when I get back home. (I see a trek to Point Reyes/Cowgirl Creamery in our near future, girl!)

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    Replies
    1. Totally why I could never be vegan! I love cheese! I think we are going to try our mozzarella today! And yes, let's put that date in the books for Point Reyes and Cowgirl Creamery!

      Hope your vacation is awesome! Come back soon! :) xo - Erica

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