The sous vide method has taken the cheese making world by storm! (In case you aren’t familiar with it, sous vide is the process of cooking food in plastic bags which are submerged in hot water.) Various sous vide appliances are being used by cheese makers to heat their milk and curds without worry about burning or scorching.
The method shown here involves using a sous vide immersion heater to bring the milk to temp and to keep it there. This keeps the milk from sticking to the bottom of your pot and it frees you to do other things while you wait. Jack Aldridge in Iowa raved about his Anova and then Rebecca Brill in Maugansville, MD sent us pictures from when she last made ricotta with her Gourmia Immersion Circulator.
Rebecca’s Directions for Making Ricotta (from Jim Wallace’s recipe on our website):
Note: This is a small batch, using 1/2 gallon of whole milk.
1. The setup. The Sous Vide circulator is set for 199F.
2. I added a 1/2 tsp of salt.
3. Then I dissolved 1 tsp of citric acid in 1/2 cup water. I added 1/2 of this to the milk.
4. After heating the milk to 195F, I let it sit for about 20 minutes, then check the production. It looks ready.
5. The first scoop of the ricotta (sorry for the blur…it’s from the steam coming off the water)
6. Draining the ricotta.
Overall, it took a little over an hour. Definitely not as quick as direct heat, but my pan didn’t scorch and I feel like I got more ricotta out of the batch.
7. Last minute decision to make it a ricotta salata.