It's so good to have fresh, homemade ricotta for a delicious appetizer or a super-tasty lasagna. It's also surprisingly easy to make, and less expensive than buying fresh ricotta in a gourmet market. Watch Lidia Bastianich demonstrate how to make ricotta, in the Homegrown Heroes episode of Lidia Celebrates America.
- 2 quarts whole milk (preferably organic)
- 1 cup heavy cream (preferably organic)
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- For the ricotta, line a large sieve with a double thickness of damp cheesecloth and set over a bowl. Combine the milk, cream and salt in a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan and slowly bring to a boil,
- Add the lemon juice and reduce the heat to the lowest setting. Stir gently until the mixture begins to curdle, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and let sit without stirring for 10 minutes.
- Pour the mixture through the cheesecloth and let drain 1 hour. What’s left in the cloth is the ricotta. Chill until ready to use. (NOTE: if you don’t get at least a heaping cup of ricotta, you can reheat the liquid and repeat the process with more lemon juice to recurdle it.)