Oh So Simple Homemade Ricotta

Ricotta means ‘recooked’ in Italian, and is traditionally made from the whey that is leftover from other cheese making.

Fresh ricotta is the easiest cheese to make from scratch. Simple, real food. 🐄

Ingredients

  • 2 litres (½ gallon) of full-fat milk

  • ⅓ cup lemon juice

Method

  1. Warm the milk in a large saucepan on the stove. Stir the whole time to avoid it catching on the bottom of the pan.

  2. Just before boiling (when the milk starts to steam and froth a little) remove from the heat. (If you have a thermometer this will be when the milk is around 94oC / 200oF).

  3. Immediately add the lemon juice and gently stir for 3 seconds. You’ll start to see the milk break into chunky curds and watery whey. Let it sit for 10 minutes.

  4. Set up some cheesecloth* over a sieve over a large bowl. Using a slatted spoon, gently lift the larger chunks of curd into the cheesecloth. Now carefully pour the remaining mixture into the cheesecloth (try to avoid pouring it from a height so as not to break the curds up too much).

  5. Allow the ricotta to drain anywhere from 10 minutes to an hour, depending on your desired texture.

  6. Ricotta is now ready for eating. It will keep for a few days in the fridge.

Serve sweet:

➕ Figs, walnut and a drizzle of honey

➕ Toast with jam or honey

Serve savoury:

➕ Add to pasta with olive oil, prosciutto, lemon zest and shaved parmesan

➕ Serve on top of ripe, chopped tomatoes along with fresh oregano or basil, olive oil and sea salt

👌🏽

* Notes:

  • Whey is a great source of protein. Add to smoothies or use on muesli.

  • If you can’t find cheesecloth, a clean tea towel or Chux cloth will do.

  • Lemon juice can be substituted for same measure of white vinegar or ½ teaspoon of citric acid dissolved in water.

  • Don’t use UHT (ultra pasteurized) milk, it won’t work. Use fresh, full-fat milk.

My 5 steps to amazingly good pork crackling (every time!)

I've never managed to achieve crackling on a pork roast. Ever. Despite the countless tips I've received over the years from various people who have told me that their techniques are foolproof, my roasts have always been decidedly uncrackled. It's one of life's greatest disappointments.

Until now.

Looklooklooklook! Pork crackling 🙌🏼

How did I do it? I'm glad you asked. I've cracked the code and have unleashed the secret to great crackling each and every time (based on my experience of this one, excellent pork roast 😜). Here are my 5 fail-proof steps to drool-worthy crackling:

1. Dry out the rind.
Leave it overnight in the fridge uncovered so the cool air dries out the skin as much as possible. When you take it out, use paper towel to give it a cool final towelling.

2. Score the rind.
Criss-cross cuts through the skin (but not down to the meat) - easiest with a stanley knife so you can get the depth of the cuts just right.

3. Get the rind to room temperature as much as possible
Not sure if this is vital but it's what I did and so I've added it in. 

4. Rub the rind with oil and heaps of salt.
Slop some (olive) oil over the top and get it glistening, then sprinkle like a handful of salt over rub it all in, getting it into the cuts (ouch) and everything.

5. Put it into a super-hot oven 🔥
Max it out - I pre-heated my oven to the highest temp possible (240 degrees Celcius) then quickly put the roast in to avoid the heat escaping. Leave it in for about 30 mins (although if it smells like it's burning, act on this) then turn it down and cook as per your usual roast instructions. (Here's a how-to guide for roast pork, thank you Australian Pork. The presenter is gold.)

🐷 🍴 😍