The first time I made cottage cheese, it was because I thought it would be cool to make cheese at home, and this is by far the easiest kind. Since then, I've found it's a great way to get rid of extra milk that is on the verge of spoiling. Today, I made it because I couldn't find an 8oz container of ricotta and was very upset by the price of the 15oz container. For 30¢ to upgrade to the next size milk, I made what I needed.
2 C milk (2%, 1%, or nonfat)
2 Tb vinegar (distilled or white wine. If you want to use lemon juice, double the amount)
1. Warm milk to 165º. The recipe works as low as 120º, but I like to be overly cautious and kill all bacteria.
2. Remove from heat and stir in vinegar. It will separate into curds & whey almost immediately.
3. Let sit until it cools to room temperature, up to 4 hours. Do not stir.
4. Line a sieve with two layers of cheesecloth. Yes, you really can use it to make cheese. Place sieve over a bowl. Pour curds & whey into sieve and allow to drain.
5. Place sieve and bowl in fridge until cold and dry. About 4 hours or overnight. At this point, it can be used as a substitute for ricotta.
6. To make more like store-bought cottage cheese: Add a few tablespoons of milk to create the creamy texture, and a scant 1/8 teaspoon of salt and sugar for flavor.
Makes 1 cup
Difficulty rating :)