I think that the language should recognize a new simile: as easy as ricotta cheese. As soon as you finish reading this, you need to go buy milk, cream, lemon juice, and cheesecloth. It’s magic, and it tastes sooooooooo good. A few tips to maximize your success, and avoid the resounding failure (hereinafter referred to as The Goat Milk Incident) endured by my friend L. and I. First, use single pasteurized, not ultra pasteurized milk and cream, and organic if possible. The flavor difference is really marked, and it supposedly can affect the ability to curdle. (Um, duh. I just noticed in the picture that the goat’s milk we used was Ultra-Pasteurized. Way to go, self.) Second, use fresh lemon juice for curdling at the 3 tbsp. amount indicated in the recipe. If you use bottled juice, you’ll need to use more. We ran out of fresh on the first batch of ri-cow-tta, and we had to use 5 tbsps. of bottled on the second batch.) Third, know that goat’s milk ain’t cows milk, and won’t curdle like it either. Phooey– I still haven’t figured out how to use all that milk. Once you turn the heat down from the milk having come to a “rolling boil,” you add the lemon juice and stir– within a minute, it starts to separate, with the yellowish whey on top and the solids starting to curd out.
We let the curd drain for two hours and it was amazing. I could have eaten the whole thing right then and there, unadorned. No sense in gilding the lily, after all. The final product? Drier than commercial ricotta, more chunky, and sweet, amazingly so. It’s like milk candy, almost. We decided to garnish some gluten free pizza dough that L. ordered to try for me with the ricotta and other fixins’. Delicious yumminess ensued. Pictures are below. (Grumble, WordPress doesn’t support PictoBrowser, my apologies for the slightly annoying icons on the slideshow platform.)