Homemade Ricotta

homemade ricotta

Early yesterday morning (before my coffee had a chance to kick in), I made my own ricotta. After a few simple steps and a brief period of waiting, I HAD MADE MY OWN RICOTTA!!! I spent hours bouncing off the walls with excitement. No, it wasn’t the coffee! It was the ricotta! ¬†Ina Garten is a genius; but I already knew that. I absolutely love her and this recipe has clearly changed my life. This ricotta is silky smooth and creamy, not gritty and tasteless like the ricotta you find in a grocery store. Store bought ricotta is super expensive and this batch cost me less than a small tub from the store. How awesome is that?

RICOTTA!

Later on the in the day I made Ina’s herbed ricotta bruschetta for lunch and it was absolutely divine. I’ll post the recipe soon but first you should making your own ricotta! Put it on your weekend TO-DO list and join the fun!

Thank you Ina for helping me knock of another item from my 31 comes before 32 list!

#25. Make my own cheese from scratch=DONE.

And we’re off!

Milk. Heavy Cream. Vinegar. Cheesecloth. Strainer. Bowl.

gathering

Put milk & heavy cream in a big pot.

milk and cream

Add kosher salt. Stir it up.

kosher

Boil it.

bubbling

Measure vinegar.

vinegar

Pour it in the milk/cream that just boiled.

hello vinegar

Let it sit for a minute.

sit

Curds & Whey! Paging little Miss Muffet, where are you??

1 minute

Pour it over the cheesecloth.

pouring

Strain out the liquid.

straining

Let it sit. The longer you let it sit, the thicker it is. I went 40 minutes on this batch.

sitting...

Ricotta.

RICOTTA!

I MADE MY OWN RICOTTA!!! You should do it too.

Homemade Ricotta

Makes about 2 cups (less if you strain it longer)

(recipe from Barefoot Contessa: How Easy is That? by Ina Garten)

  • 4 cups whole milk
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 tablespoons good white wine vinegar

Set a large sieve over a deep bowl. Dampen 2 layers of cheesecloth with water and line the sieve with the cheesecloth.

Pour the milk and stream into a stainless steel or enameled pot such as Le Creuset. Stir in the salt. Bring to a full boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Turn off the heat and stir in the vinegar. Allow the mixture to stand for 1 minute until it curdles. It will separate into thick parts (the curds) and milky parts (the whey).

Pour the mixture into a cheesecloth-lined sieve and allow it to drain into the bowl at room temperature for 20 to 25 minutes, occasionally discarding the liquid that collects in the bowl. The longer you let the mixture drain, the thicker the ricotta (I left mine sitting for 40 minutes to make it super smooth). Transfer the ricotta to a bowl, discarding the cheesecloth and any remaining whey. Use immediately or cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate. The ricotta will keep refrigerated for 4 to 5 days.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

52 Comments

say something
  • July 29, 2011

    I think I made my version with only whole milk and it still turned out creamy and ricotta-y. I think that Ina lady just wants to fatten everyone up!

  • kelly
    July 29, 2011

    Can’t believe how easy this looks. Just spent $7 for a small container. I will make this. Thanks for sharing, Tracy!

  • I’m in love with this. Isn’t homemade cheese amazing? You should check out my little post on making goat cheese (if you’re so inclined)! http://www.good-graces.com/2011/04/handcrafted-chevre.html

    • July 29, 2011

      I AM SOOO INTO THAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I was JUST thinking about how I’d love to make goat cheese!!! THANK YOU!

  • July 29, 2011

    I am SO doing this! I love Ina too, but you…are a total rad-ass. Yeah.

    • July 29, 2011

      Cindy- YOU WILL LOVE IT!!! Seriously, friend!! I can’t wait to see what you think!

  • July 29, 2011

    Yes! I can now alternately make cheese and ice cream when buying diary in bulk! I have a recipe bookmarked that would be so freaking fantastic with fresh ricotta. Thanks for making it look so easy :)

    Is your birthday coming up? You’re really cranking out that list!

    • July 29, 2011

      YES! August 18th!! I’m trying to bust out as much as possible. Totally not gonna make them all though. oh wells!

  • July 29, 2011

    This has been on my to do list for an absurd amount of time.. Seriously I’m ashamed.. I need to make this soon. Looks delicious!

  • July 29, 2011

    Wow, awesome, you have all my respect! :)

  • July 29, 2011

    I love that you did this. I remember the first time I went to Allison’s house for dinner, she made homemade mozzarella, this amazing pasta etc. and I was so blown away by the fact she made her own cheese. She insists it’s as easy as you say it is…guess if you both say so, I’ve got to give it a go. Happy Friday!

  • July 29, 2011

    hrrmmmm…. i do love the idea of making my own ricotta. but! i’m not the biggest ina fan – she sorta gets on my nerves, but not in the same way that sandra lee does, so there’s that!

    congrats on knockin’ off those list items!

  • Lynx
    July 29, 2011

    Has anyone tried making feta cheese? I know I could google for how-tos, but why waste a good post. If I could eat that all the time, I would. But nevermind.

    Anyone?

  • July 29, 2011

    uau!so cool!
    In my country (Portugal) we usually do ‘fresh cheese’. It’s just whole milk, salt and rennet. You have to try too :)

  • July 29, 2011

    Amazed! I also love your utensil table cloth.

  • July 30, 2011

    Ooo gotta get myself a cheesecloth now….

  • July 30, 2011

    Oh my, I am seriously salivating!! Have seen the recipe and love Ina but was always to scared, so thank you Tracy because now I feel courageous and will give it a go :-)

  • July 30, 2011

    Mmmmm….. this looks amazing! If you like Indian food, you should try this recipe for sauteed arugula & paneer. Paneer is this mild mozzarella-like cheese that is beyond delicious and VERY easy to make. The steps are pretty much the same as this. I blogged the recipe here: http://wp.me/pW913-Pv.

    THANKS FOR POSTING THIS. I’m making this tomorrow. :)

    • August 3, 2011

      ps. it was totally tacky to post my own blog within a comment, wasn’t it? i blame homemade-cheese-sharing excitement… ooooops!

  • Darcee
    July 30, 2011

    Have you ever tried making your own yogurt? I’ve been making my own for the last year, it’s a super easy way using the crockpot. And, if you leave it to strain longer, you get labneh, a kind of cheese. Both are delicious!!!

  • July 30, 2011

    I never have thought that making ricotta at home is that doable an gives such wonderful results!
    And I can totally understand your excitement!

  • Helen
    July 30, 2011

    I’m going to make this today! I love Ina Garten.
    I’m going to use it in Rachel Allen’s Pasta, tomato, basil & ricotta recipe… simple and delish!

    Hi from UK, by the way. I’ve just found your website from the Joy the Baker podcasts that I’ve just discovered.

  • July 31, 2011

    Oh! I love Ina and I love how easy this looks and I love that I have a new project! Fantastic!

    Also, so cool you have a “31 before 32″ list. I have a “26 before 26″ list, AND our birthdays are super close together! Good luck on it!

  • marci
    August 1, 2011

    holy cannoli! you & Ina are both GENIUS :-D

  • August 1, 2011

    thanks for the inspiration tracy, i made ricotta this weekend! when asked about the impromptu cheese-making urge, i replied, i got the recipe from the lady i met in trader joes!

  • Josh
    August 1, 2011

    I hate to crash the party, guys, but this isn’t authentic ricotta cheese and it’s probably why you find it so distinct from the ricotta you buy in the supermarket. Nothing wrong with that. But, not ricotta.

    Ina’s recipe is for a soft cheese curd (the heavy cream’s high fat content is necessary for a fine, tender curd), while ricotta would actually be made from the whey–the clear liquid that you strained off.

    • August 1, 2011

      Party Crasher!! Thanks for the info, Josh. Someone needs to tell Ina & her cookbook editors! The nerve of them to consider it real ricotta! I kid..I kid… Even though this might not technically be LEGIT ricotta, it still tastes awesome and is way better (to me at least!) than store bought ricotta. It’s also a very good alternative to me and it’s cheaper. Hopefully other people might see that it’s easy to make your own “cheese” as a result of this post, and that was my ultimate goal.

  • August 3, 2011

    You are opening up a whole new world of possibilities for me. Dear lord.

  • August 13, 2011

    I made ricotta! Thanks to you Tracy :)))

  • August 17, 2011

    Dang. I just got done making this and I had way more whey than curds. Only like a cup of ricotta. I think I should have waited longer before I poured it into the sieve. Any suggestions?

  • Kim
    September 11, 2011

    I can’t get mine to form curds. Help!!!!!!

    • September 11, 2011

      Oh no! Did you deviate from the recipe? Tell me what happened!

  • Kim
    September 11, 2011

    You are awesome. Followed it to the letter!! Won’t form curds. I have it in my 5.5 Qt Le Creuset now.

  • Kim
    September 11, 2011

    I put in the whole milk, cream and salt. Heated it to a boil. Tool it off the heat. Put in 3 teaspoons vinegar and waited. No curds.

  • Kim
    September 11, 2011

    Think I figured it out. I was using teaspoons instead of tablespoons of vinegar. Just added more and I am waiting.

  • Kim
    September 11, 2011

    We are getting curds!!!! Thank you for the moral support!!

    • September 11, 2011

      YES!!!!!!! Glad it worked out!!! You had me worried for a sec!

  • Kim
    September 11, 2011

    Thanks again. I was very worried there for several minutes! I made the herbed ricotta bruschetta and it rocked!! Hope you had a great weekend. You sure helped mine end well.

  • Lisa
    February 27, 2012

    Bummer! Followed instructions exactly and my mixture…would. not. separate. I even tried adding some extra vinegar, but alas. Can’t figure out why. I’m no slouch in the kitchen, but this one didn’t work for me. Any clues?

    • February 27, 2012

      How long did you let it sit for? Also was your milk ultra pasteurized? That can pose a problem.

      • Lisa
        February 27, 2012

        I let it sit for a minute but I’m betting the ultra pasturized might be the issue. Thanks for getting back to me!

        • February 27, 2012

          That’s most likely it!! I hope you try it again with regular milk. You will LOOOVE it.

  • pamela
    January 1, 2013

    Made this today, sooo delicious, especially when it was warm…Then I made the herbed ricotta spread on grilled ciabbatta, oh my…genius! thank you thank you thank you!!!!

    • Tracy
      January 1, 2013

      That sounds soo good! I am going to have to make some ricotta soon. I forgot how wonderful it is!

  • Tracy
    January 3, 2013

    …went down to Pike Place Market today and picked up fabulous ingredients to make this. Whole milk and heavy cream and lots of fresh herbs. It’s in the cheesecloth now…can’t wait to try it! So much for a New Years Resolutions…

Leave a reply

*
*

Trackbacks & Pings