From Italy with Love:
When I was a child, weekly I would wait in anticipation for the "cheese" man to drive by and ring his bell alerting the street that he was selling fresh ricotta.
A sweet, smooth fresh cheese made from cows milk.
Originally my grandfather used to make it from sheep's milk, pungent and salty.
As sheep's milk was not easily available to the new immigrants in the early '60's, they adapted and made this creamy spreadable cheese from cows milk.
My mother bought it and I would watch the "cheese" man slide it out of it's long cylindrical container onto my mother's dish.
Aah those were wonderful memories as they no longer are made in that type of form and are now sold in cold plastic containers in the dairy section.
While in Italy, so as not to let the milk go to waste my sister in law would make her own ricotta!
I know some of you have made it and I didn't believe it could be done with lemon juice as my grandfather used rennet to make his cheese, but I am a converted believer.
It's so simple anyone can do it!
1lt of full fat milk
1/2 lemon juiced
(zest can be used if you want a lemon flavour)
On medium high heat bring the milk almost to a boil.
You should see a foam develop on top.
DO NOT BRING TO A BOIL
Remove from heat and stir in the lemon juice.
Allow to sit for a few minutes until you see a curdling of the milk.
Skim off this curdled milk with a slotted spoon, until the cheese is all gathered.
Place in a clean and dried empty strawberry container.
You know, the one that is green and has holes.
Place on a flat plate to catch drippings.
Allow to cool to room temperature.
Use immediately or place in refrigerator for up to 3 days.
My lovely snack is topped with my sister in laws
backyard berries and homemade jam.
Her sister's homemade bread holds this wonderful
Ya ya, I know they are too much!