So in Part One I mentioned it was really my newfound ability (which could really be anyone’s ability… it’s really so easy) to make ricotta that ignited the idea to do a lasagna. A few months ago, it just seemed like homemade ricotta recipes were popping up everywhere. I think the first one I saw was on Smitten Kitchen. It caught my eye, but was also kind of like, “*Gasp!* Candy thermometers?! Cheesecloths?!” Seemed out of my league.
Then I saw even Gwyneth Paltrow had mastered the art. Not only had she done it, she did so with the assistance of Ina Garten at a brunch party, and later proceeded to make homemade pizza with it in her backyard pizza oven. Though jealousy pertaining to camaraderie with the Barefoot Contessa/backyard pizza ovens/marriage to Chris Martin kind of make me resent her just a little (and the celeb gossip blogs certainly encourage such resentment, calling her “Fishsticks” and casting her as an aloof snob) she’s actually quite endearing to me for some reason. The fact that she unabashedly included shots of the burnt-to-a-crisp pizza she forgot, possibly on account of drunkenness, could be part of that reason. (Oh! And speaking of Coldplay… in these parts they’re not exactly a hot item and I’m in the dark about Mylo Xyloto. How’s it?!)
But I digress. “Fishy”‘s recipe seemed simple enough but I still wasn’t taking the bait (ha! No pun intended but it stays!). Then along came this little gem, and the whole thing seemed doable. No candy thermometer. Paper towels in place of cheesecloth. I decided to give it a go.
And as it turned out, cheesecloth is actually easier to find in Thailand than paper towels, so I got one and I love it. It makes me feel like a real adult. Plus I can make my very own almond milk now. But… digressing again. So these photos are actually from an ages old day of ricotta-making that I never blogged about (that actually went towards a day of homemade pizza making that I will absolutely blog about, eventually). You can’t tell but in it I use lemon, like the recipe calls for.
But with two exceptions I’ve had to go the white vinegar route (random trivia: in China there were lemons but limes were almost impossible to find; in Thailand it’s the other way around. The Thais use the same word, “manao,” for both, and I’ve heard many don’t even realize there’s a distinction.). I’ve also had to substitute Whipping Cream for the Heavy Cream in each case (even whipping cream I wasn’t able to find at Tesco yesterday and I about had a heart attack. Thank God for Sahathai!), and have had good results. So let’s proceed.
Also, the reason I was so eager to get it completed yesterday is that while it’s really nice when it’s fresh and warm, it gets even a bit better after a few days in the fridge. Plus I’ll have other things to accomplish today. I’ll let you know how it goes. Happy Thanksgiving (early Thanksgiving for all you, I suppose) to all!