Monday, August 1, 2011

Homemade Ricotta and Baked Ziti

A lot of times I like to try making something in the kitchen just to see if I can.  Some projects I considering are homemade soda, mead, divinity,  kaiser rolls, and bourbon balls.  Right now I'm getting a little obsessed with making cheese.  I know I posted about homemade ricotta before, but this time I thought I would do a few step by step pictures, so you can see that the process is really easy.  You can do this too. All you need are lemons, whole milk, heavy cream, and salt.  The ricotta that this technique produces is so much better than anything in the grocery store, and you will feel amazingly accomplished and cool if you make this.  I use the recipe found here.  
First, cut and juice your lemons.  I always make a double batch of ricotta, so this is twice as much lemon juice as called for in the recipe above.
 Wait for milk to reach proper temperature.
 After milk has come to temperature, stir in lemon juice gently and let sit for 5 minutes.  Then you can pour the curds and whey into a few layers of cheesecloth set over a strainer and bowl.
 Let sit for 1 to 2 hours depending on how firm you want this.  
Make baked ziti.  I used the recipe here.  This was amazing.  It was extremely rich though, so I wish I had made a salad to go alongside.  It was even better the next day as leftovers.

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