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Chef's Notes

Ricotta is an Italian cheese made from sheep,cow,goat, or Italian water buffalo milk whey.

The production of ricotta in the Italian peninsula is old, dating back to the Bronze Age.In the second millennium BC, ceramic vessels called milk boilers started to appear frequently and were apparently unique to the peninsula. These were designed to boil milk at high temperatures and prevent the milk from boiling over. The fresh acid-coagulated cheeses produced with these boilers were probably made with whole milk.

Ricotta (literally meaning "recooked") protein can be harvested if the whey is first allowed to become more acidic by additional fermentation (by letting it sit for 12–24 hours at room temperature). Then the acidified whey is heated to near boiling. The combination of low pH and high temperature causes it to precipitate, forming a fine curd. Once cooled, it is separated by passing the liquid through a fine cloth, leaving the curd behind.

Ricotta curds are creamy white in appearance, and slightly sweet in taste. In this form, it is somewhat similar in texture to some cottage cheese variants, though considerably lighter. It is highly perishable. However, ricotta also is made in aged varieties which are preservable for much longer.

We use ricotta made from the traditional method for both our delicious cheesecake and ricotta cheese cannelloni

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