No, you didn’t misread my recipe title. I have honestly found the most ridiculously easy way to make fresh ricotta cheese. In fact, now having made this three ingredient, sweet, creamy delight, I can say without any hesitation that I will never buy pre-made ricotta cheese from the store ever again. EVER! The level of texture and flavor in this ricotta was, well….ridiculous!
I used this ricotta to stuff some al dente cooked large sea shell pasta then lightly ladled marinara sauce over them and baked them in the oven. However, the uses for this cheese are endless. My next experiment will be using it to replace the ricotta filling in my ‘Ricotta Summer Squash Galette’ recipe I posted last summer. And I imagine the ricotta would be a great creamy layer on lightly toasted bread and topped with bruschetta spread. The trick is to eat it fresh right after you make it and not refrigerate it.
8 cups whole milk
2 cups buttermilk
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
Extra Things you’ll need:
1 foot of kitchen string
1) Line a strainer with two large pieces of cheesecloth, folded in half. Secure the cheesecloth to the strainer with a large rubber band then place the strainer in a large bowl.
2) Pour the milk and buttermilk in a deep saucepan and bring the mixture to a low boil over medium-high heat. Using the thermometer stir the mixture continually until you reach 175 to 180 degrees where you’ll see thin strands of cheese begin to separate.
3) As the curds begin to separate remove the pan from the heat. Working quickly, remove the curds using a small hand-held strainer and drop the curds into the cheesecloth. Continue removing the curds until you no longer see them separating from the milk.
4) Remove the rubber band from the cheesecloth and gather the material up into a small bundle. Tie the string around the top of the bundle.
5) Remove the strainer from the bowl and place the bowl on the countertop. Tie the end of the string to something stable (I use one of my cupboard door handles), suspending the bundle over the bowl for about 20 to 25 minutes until the extra liquid has drained from the cheese.
6) Transfer the drained ricotta to a smaller bowl and season with the salt. Serve immediately.