Last year I used Valentine’s as a day to start working on my intimate dining concept for Bligh St. Bistro and I have to say that it made me feel so much love for myself (who knew), the world & my partner of course (in that order). Funnily enough, spreading love can make you feel it most strongly yourself (novel concept).
At the time I was reading Molly Wizenberg’s second book ‘Delancey’ and decided to attempt making fresh ricotta from her recipe. I highly recommend giving it a go. It’s super easy and really makes you feel accomplished (like knowing how to start a campfire, not that I actually know how to do that) for all those emergency ricotta needs, you know.
- 6 1/2 cups full cream milk
- 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
- 2 cups buttermilk
- 1 tsp fine sea salt
- In a dutch oven (or large heavy bottomed saucepan) combine the milk, cream and buttermilk.
- Place over medium heat and cook, stirring occasionally to prevent scorching.
- When the liquid reaches 180 degrees Celsius stop stirring.
- The curds and whey will begin to separate. When it looks like they've separated as much as they can (ie. not much is happening) take the pot off the heat and let it sit for 30 minutes.
- Line a strainer with cheesecloth and place it over a bowl to catch liquid that drains through.
- Ladle the ricotta into the strainer. Do not press down. Let gravity pull the excess liquid through (your cheese will love you more for it).
- When the whey has drained away the cheese will be soft and creamy and ready to use. You can also let it strain in the fridge overnight and will have a firm ricotta the following day.
- Apparently you can add the leftover whey into a bath and get silk smooth skin but I wasn't game enough. Let me know if you try it.
I set up a tiny table in the living room covered in a pretty white tablecloth. I used paradise pears to decorate the table since you can’t get past a good ‘perfect pear’ pun on Valentine’s. There were also champagne glasses with rose petals and a menu topped with a heart.
We have delicious sugar cookies for sale to mark the occasion this year. These are selling fast so get in quick to grab some ‘sweet sweet love’ to share around. For full details and to place an order head to our facebook page.