|All the three cheese - Ricotta inside the dome, moulded cream cheese, mascarpone|
A Cheese post has been on my mind for a very long time. I often make Cream Cheese and have also made Mascarpone a couple of times. So this time Sawsan from Chef in Disguise was our March 2013 Daring Cooks hostess! Sawsan challenges us to make our own home made cheeses. She gave us a variety of choices to make, all of them easily accomplished and delicious!
While making cheese like Ricotta, Cream Cheese or Mascarpone is fairly simple, making cheese like Feta or Goat's Cheese is a little more advanced and requires an enzyme called Rennet, which causes milk coagulation. Rennet is either animal or vegetable based and is available either in liquid, powder or tablet form.
These days Feta Cheese is my new favourite. I love it in my salads. My earlier top of the list cheese was Brie. (I could polish off the whole block !!) So when I saw this challenge I was elated to find a good recipe for Feta and wanted to try my hands on it. However Rennet is not readily available in the retail market in India and after trying everywhere I settled against my option.
For this challenge I prepared Ricotta, Cream Cheese, Labneh - a variant of cream cheese and Mascarpone Cheese. Both Labneh and Ricotta were my first tries and I must say I think homemade Ricotta is far better than the store bought.
I love the way Labneh looks. It looks, refreshingly exotic, it's simple and healthy. I can't wait to taste it !! ( I still haven't ...letting the flavours mature)
Recipe #1 - Ricotta
However in modern times Fresh Ricotta is made and it is no longer just a by product of another cheese. It enjoys a 'Cheese' Status' itself
The consistency of the cheese can be controlled by the length of time you drain it for.
The cheese is delicious and eaten as it is, used in both savoury dishes and desserts.
|Ricotta Cheese - moulded as well as crumbled.|
Source: From the bartolini kithcens
Since I was going to use this batch of cream cheese for my cheesecakes, I did not add salt ot the whole batch.
I made a very small quantity of Labneh so I added salt to only that much.
If Stored in Olive Oil, Labneh can last up to 6 months in the refrigerator.
Recipe # 3 - Mascarpone
Recipe Source: Vera's recipe from Baking Obsession
This recipe makes 340gm of mascarpone cheese