Sometimes, I need something creamy.
Sometimes, I need to make something that seems fancy.
If you sometimes need these things too, then have I got the answer for you.
Now, don't get me wrong - I've never really been a huge fan of ricotta cheese. I'll eat the heck out of some good lasagna, but I've never been one to use ricotta as a spread, and have certainly never been tempted to eat it with a spoon.
But that has changed, my friends.
With this recipe. Thank you, smitten kitchen.
Apparently, making simple cheeses in an apartment is not only doable, but easy-peasy.
I just heated up some milk and cream til it boiled, added a little lemon juice, then poured it into my straining contraption.
After about two hours of straining, I found myself with a heavenly cloud of something that resembled a richer, creamier version of the ricotta I was used to - more delicate in flavor, and somewhat reminiscent of creme fraiche or a stiff whipped cream, but with more body.
I immediately made a few french bread toasts and smeared them with the cheese, then drizzled on some honey and some freshly ground black pepper for a little kick. Colton should feel very honored that I ignored my greedy thoughts and shared with him.
Finally, for dinner, I decided to make stuffed pasta shells. I made a stewed tomato-meat sauce, and mixed the ricotta with some grated parmesan and basil which I stuffed inside the shells, then baked with the sauce until everything was hot and gooey.
My goodness!!!!! Easily the best pasta dish I've ever made.
(Good for the heart, not so good for the thighs. Not that I care right now.)
Do yourself and your family a favor... head on over to smitten kitchen and see what she's got cooking.