Figs and Fresh Ricotta: Watch & Eat!

We promised it was on the way, and now here it is! Enjoy our brief video tutorial on making homemade ricotta cheese and pairing it with grilled bread, local honey and fresh figs. This delightful snack can be enjoyed as an appetizer, as part of a tapas style menu or even for dessert. Figs are bountiful and delicious this time of year, so take advantage of what’s in season, and try it out! We think you’re going to love it! And read on for the text version of our fresh ricotta recipe…

Homemade Ricotta Cheese

Makes about 2 cups

Ricotta cheese is easy to make and, when done at home, a real game-changer.  Not only is it more fresh and moist than its store-bought counterparts, it has the flavor of fresh dairy.  We feel this recipe creates a cheese which is best scooped onto fresh crostini; enjoyed simply with fruit and honey; or simply eaten from the colander.

2 quarts whole milk

2 cups half-and-half

1 tsp. salt

¼ cup fresh lemon juice

In a large, heavy nonreactive saucepan over medium-high heat, stir together the milk, half-and-half and salt and bring to a full boil, stirring occasionally to prevent scorching.  Turn off the head and add the lemon juice.  Stir until the mixture has separated into thick curds and a cloudy liquid (the whey).

Line a large colander with cheesecloth or a towel, and set over a large bowl.  Gently ladle the curds and whey into the colander and let drain for about 15 minutes (you may also wring the excess whey out of the cheese by gathering and applying pressure to the towel for a firmer cheese).

Scrape the ricotta cheese from the cheesecloth into a bowl.  It is ready to serve or can be covered and refrigerated for up to 2 days.

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