I've kind of been on an appetizer kick lately.
It all started with this appetizer...can you say love!!!
I was perusing one of Ina's cookbooks and found this little gem as well--
Homemade Ricotta Cheese
I thought to myself, I bet I can make this.
I never have ventured into making cheese, but why not.
It has 4 ingredients, how hard can it be??
It really wasn't that hard at all,
and I might add,
definitely worth it on all levels.
I am always a ricotta fan, but now I have tasted ricotta in a whole different way.
I'll never buy store bought again--no matter what.
Now, this brings me to the point of my post.
So here you go.
This one is easy and delicious.
Bruschetta with Roasted Grapes & Thyme and Fresh Ricotta
For the ricotta:
4 cups whole milk
2 cups heavy cream
1 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
Line a large sieve with two layers of damp cheesecloth and place over a large bowl.
Pour the milk and cream into a large enameled pot. Stir in the salt. Bring to a full bowl over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Turn of the heat and stir in the vinegar. Allow the mixture to stand for 1 minute or until it curdles. It will separate into thick parts (the curds) and milky parts (the whey).
Pour the mixture into the cheesecloth-lined sieve and allow to drain into the bowl at room temperature for 20 to 25 minutes, occasionally discarding the liquid that collects in the bowl. The longer you let the mixture drain, the thicker the ricotta. Transfer the ricotta to a bowl, discarding the cheesecloth and any remaining whey. Use immediately or cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate. The ricotta will keep refrigerated for 4-5 days.
For the appetizer:
fresh thyme sprigs
crusty bread, sliced thinly
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Spread the grapes onto a sheet pan. Drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and thyme leaves. Toss all together gently with your hands. Place the pan in the oven and roast for 10-12 minutes or until the grapes just begin to burst.
Meanwhile, heat a grill pan to medium high and brush the bread with olive oil. Grill until toasted.
Spread ricotta over the bread and top with the roasted grapes. (The thyme will needed to be removed, because they do not taste very good, but leave a nice taste on the grapes.)