I’ve been re-reading Plate to Pixel this week. An attempt to push myself forward off this photography plateau I’ve been stuck on. I struggle, at times, with the balancing act that is being a mom, working full time, and maintain a blog. When my photos suck, and I know it, I see them as the crack that will bring down the wall and a panic begins to rise within me.
I know that when it comes to the blog trifecta: “Recipes-Photos-writing” I have a long way to go in all areas. The pursuit of goals isn’t about being perfect, or even about raw talent, as much as it is about struggle. Continue to fight, learn, seek objective feedback, challenge yourself, and don’t give up.
The best thing about this recipe, is how easy it was to make homemade ricotta. Cheese making has been on my To Do list for a while and ricotta was a great intro, so easy and fast.
Durring my research, I used three posts as guides and made two batches, all of which I consumes over the weekend.
I used posts from these three blogs:
I used the milk I had on hand, and this is what I came up with:
Homemade Ricotta and Prosciutto Wrapped Mango on Toast
2 cups of whole milk
1 cup of cream
1/2 tsp salt
3 tbs lemon juice
8-10 large slices of sour dough bread
1 large mango
4-6 slices of prosciutto, sliced in half down the center to make 8-12 long skinny strips
salt and pepper to taste
To Make the Ricotta:
Put the milk, cream and salt into a sauce pan. Attach a thermometer (either candy or deep-fry is fine) to the side of the pot, making sure that the tip of the thermometer does not touch the bottom of the pan but is still submerged in the milk. Heat over medium/high heat until it reaches 190 degrees, about 6-8 minutes. You will know it has reached this temperature because it will foam up really fiercely.
Remove from heat and add the lemon juice, stir only once. you want it to distribute, but you don’t want to disrupt the curds that will be forming. Leave it alone for about 5 minutes. Don’t touch it.
Place a mesh strainer over a large bowl, line the strainer with 3-4 layers of cheese cloth.
It will still be pretty thin, this surprised me. I was expecting something that looked like cottage cheese, and it looked more like thick milk. Thats fine. Pour it into the strainer that you have lined with cheese cloth.
Allow it to drain for about 20 minutes to 2 hours. The longer you allow it to drain, the thicker and stiffer it will be. Remember that once you chill it, it will continue to thicken, so place it to chill when it is a bit softer than you want the final product to be.
I liked Julia’s tip about tying the cheese cloth to the kitchen faucet in order to speed the draining process up a bit. Worked like a charm.
Scrape the cheese into a a container with an air tight lid. Chill for at least 20 minutes prior to use.
Ricotta should keep in the fridge for about 5 days.
To make the toast:
Using a biscuit cutter, cut 3 to 4 inch circles out of the bread. Place under the broiler until golden brown, about 2-3 minutes per side.
Peel and slice the mango, wrap with prosciutto.
Spread each toast circle with ricotta, top with a prosciutto wrapped mango, sprinkle with salt and pepper.
I also made these with apples slices, and that was equally as amazing.