Homemade ricotta

Ricotta draining.

File this under: It’s so easy why didn’t I do it sooner?
Ricotta requires two ingredients: milk and some sort of acid to curdle it. In the past couple months, I’ve tried two methods for making my own. The first combined three per cent milk and buttermilk; the second three per cent milk, white wine vinegar and two per cent yogurt with live bacteria.
The final result in both cases was excellent. I used batch one in chicken cannelloni and batch two mixed with spinach and an egg for a layer in a roasted vegetable lasagna.
I think the curds formed quicker with the yogurt.
Here’s the basic technique.

Homemade ricotta mixed with spinach for lasagna.

Homemade ricotta
Ingredients 1
4 L (8 cups) milk
500 mL (2 cups) buttermilk

Ingredients 2
4 L (8 cups) milk
125 mL (1/2 cup) plain yogurt
5 ml (1 tsp) white wine vinegar

Method
Line colander with two layers of cheesecloth, leaving enough to gather.
Combine ingredients in a large pot. Heat over medium-high stirring constantly until curds start to separate from whey (175 to 180 Fahrenheit). Turn off heat and let sit for a few minutes, allowing more curds to form. Pour through colander. Let rest 15 to 20 minutes. If necessary, gather cheesecloth around ricotta to press out additional liquid.
Transfer to bowl, cover and refrigerate.

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