Homemade Ricotta

Emergency Ricotta Recipe

For today’s thrifty Thursday I thought I would share one of my favorite cheese recipes.

Like many people this time of year I was travelling and got back from the airport too late to go to the grocery. Yet the troops were hungry so I had to come up with something fast. My fridge had a half gallon on milk that was about to go bad, some lemons, and eggs. My fridge had some frozen veggies and my pantry had some lasagna noodles and spices. That was about it. So, hmm, what to do? LASAGNA ROLLS! They take almost no time to prep and cook. But as you can guess I had no Ricotta. No problem!

All you need to make ricotta is milk, lemons, vinegar, and some cheese cloth. It takes about ten minutes and I made it while boiling my noodles.


Warm the milk to

200°F: Pour the milk into a 4-quart pot and set it over medium heat. Let it warm gradually to 200°F, monitoring the temperature with an instant read thermometer. The milk will get foamy and start to steam; remove it from heat if it starts to boil.

Add the lemon juice and salt: Remove the milk from heat. Pour in the lemon juice or vinegar (or citric acid) and the salt. Stir gently to combine.

Let the milk sit for 10 minutes: Let the pot of milk sit undisturbed for 10 minutes. After this time, the milk should have separated into clumps of milky white curds and thin, watery, yellow-colored whey — dip your slotted spoon into the mix to check. If you still see a lot of un-separated milk, add another tablespoon of lemon juice or vinegar and wait a few more minutes.

Strain the curds: Set a strainer over a bowl and line the strainer with cheese cloth. Scoop the big curds out of the pot with a slotted spoon and transfer them to the strainer. Pour the remaining curds and the whey through the strainer. (Removing the big curds first helps keep them from splashing and making a mess as you pour.)
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