Saturday, 27 June 2009

A smokey ricotta

One of our canapes is grilled flatbreads with garden herb lentils and home made ricotta.

I was tasked with researching the ricotta recipe. I have to admit, I left this until the very last minute. But did find a few suitable recipes. What looked like the best one used buttermilk, whilst others used cream, or even just milk. Some included salt, some didn't. Some vinegar, some lemon...

We opted for milk, cream, and yoghurt, in place of buttermilk. We also heated it too high because we got our fahrenheit and our celcius mixed up. Which caused it to burn. but that has given it a smokey taste, which should work ok with the lentils.

Here it is, just before the flatbreads were grilled

4 pints of whole milk.
3 pints yoghurt
1 pint double cream
juice of half a juicy lemon
a pinch of salt

Rinse a stainless steel pan with cold water.

Put the milk, yoghurt and cream in the pan, and heat on a medium heat. Give it an occasional stir to stop it catching. Once it gets to a simmer, tip in the lemon juice, and stir again.

When it gets to 180 degrees fahrenheit, take it off the heat, and leave it to settle for an hour or so. We burned ours buy letting it get too hot, which has given it a smoked ricotta taste...

Fold a muslin cloth a few times, or place a clean tea towel over a colander, and scoop the curds (the thick white mass, not the translucent liquid) into the colander. Leave it to drain for a good couple of hours, before gathering up the corners and giving it a final twist. Put in an airtight container and leave overnight.

The texture should be quite light and fluffy, but also creamy. The longer you leave it to drain for, the drier it will be.

See how you get on.

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