~ "By wisdom a house is built, and through understanding it is established; Through knowledge its rooms are filled with rare and beautiful treasures." ~ "Reckless words pierce like a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing" ~ "But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy." ~ "Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths."~

Friday, March 11, 2011

Homemade Mascarpone Cheese


Homemade Mascarpone Cheese... Some time ago, I stumbled upon a blog that featured a homemade recipe for mascarpone cheese. I hadn't tried making my own mascarpone cheese at home yet. I guess I always found a way to substitute for the "real" thing... But recently I found myself with quite a bit of whipped cream in the fridge...and I really wanted(needed) to use it up. So when I found out that mascarpone can be made at home, I instantly decided to make it. Plus, all I needed was just some heavy cream and a bit of lemon juice... and I had all that.
Making mascarpone cheese isn't difficult to make...it's sort of like when you make your own ricotta or paneer cheese at home. The process is quite similar, except in this case you won't have too much whey. The mixture will have more of a thick consistency(custard-like) and you won't see the usual curds you normally get with ricotta or paneer cheese....at least I didn't:).
Now, most recipes have you heat up the cream to 185-190 deg F, and they usually heat the cream in a double boiler(bain marie). I didn't really have too much success with heating it in a double boiler...I had a hard time bringing the cream mixture to the required 190 deg. F...it stayed at 155 deg. F. for the longest time. And I mean a LONG time. More than the usual 15 minutes it takes to bring it up to that temp. So, I had to change things up a bit. I ended up pouring the mixture in a regular pot, heating the mixture on low heat, and then it came up to 190 deg. F. You do need to heat the mixture GENTLY... definitely do not want any scorching, curdling or boiling going on. For now, I think I will do away with the bain marie... and gently heat it in a regular pot. It is important to stir it often, so as not to scorch.
So if you have some heavy cream that needs to be used up, why not make some mascarpone cheese? You could use it in all sorts of dishes...in savory sauces, in desserts, or even on scones with a bit of jam:). Hope you enjoy...

NOTE: The first photo is of the mascarpone after an overnight drain...The second photo is after a couple of a days of refrigeration and whisked a bit.
Tip: The longer you let the mascarpone drain in the fridge the "drier" it becomes.

You will need: inspired by Island Vittles ~will yield 8-9 oz of mascarpone cheese

1 pint(473 ml) heavy cream*
1 TBS lemon juice
* organic pasteurized cream is preferred, but since I couldn't find any, I simply used an ultra-pasteurized heavy cream

Directions:
1. Line a large bowl with a dampened cloth...I used a flour sack towel that I just keep for dairy making, but you can use several layers of cheese cloth. You want it to be a thick layer of cloth because the mixture is creamy and not so curd-like and if it isn't thick you will lose some of the cheese along with the whey. Set it aside.
2. In a heavy pot, add cream and heat on low till cream reaches 190 deg F.(you can do this in a bain marie, if you like). Stir often so as not to scorch.
3. When cream reaches 190 deg take off heat and stir in lemon juice. Keep stirring until mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon...about a minute or so.
4. Let mixture sit for about 20 minutes to cool down ... do not stir.
5. Pour cooled mixture in cloth-lined bowl. Wrap up ends of the cloth and suspend over the bowl. You can place a chopstick( or wooden spoon) through the knot and place it over the bowl, making sure the bottom of the cloth doesn't touch the bottom of the bowl.
6. Refrigerate overnight.
7. Remove cheese from cloth and stir. If you want it thicker, you can whisk it a bit to thicken...see my second photo in the beginning of the post.

The cheese should stay fresh in the fridge for a week or so.

19 comments:

Andrea the Kitchen Witch said...

I am so making this!!!

Explora Cuisine said...

Wow, amazing recipe, I never made my own cheese at home but it sounds pretty simple :) have a great weekend!

Andreea said...

Great, great idea Ellie!!
I've seen it before and I put it on my (already huuuge) ''to try'' list :)

I will definitely try your version. Thank you for another wonderful idea!

megi said...

I will definitely be trying this over the weekend Ellie, my mother used to make it using tartaric acid and I don't even know where you would buy that. I am so happy to find a recipe using a common ingredient like lemon juice. Thank you for the recipe and the tips.

Mihaela said...

Ellie, you are surprising, like always :) I don't think I'm going to try it (yet), it's more convenient to get it from the store (I use a lot for Tiramisu), but if I ever want to make it, I know where to get the recipe from :)

M Family said...

Yaaaaaaaaay!

retete- ina said...

yummy,sounds simple,thank for recipe

Ellie said...

Andrea...Hope you like it:) It works rather well. Thanks for stopping by...

Explora Cuisine, Not difficult at all...thank you for your comment. Hope you have a great weekend as well:)...

Andreea, Yes, I too have a huge list:)... I fully understand:)...but this one, I really needed to make:).. It's definitely worth making it, though...Thank you for stopping by....

Megi, Yes, there a few ways of making it... and tartaric acid is one of the "acids" that are used...along with citric acid. Citric acid I think is more readily available ...But lemon juice works just as well:). And I know you will like it...another reason to bake and use it:).

Mihaela, Yes I agree it is MUCH more convenient to buy it...but I think we both agree that anything homemade is MUCH better:). Thanks for your kind comment and for stopping by...

M Family, Another recipe for you to try:)...hope you have some time to make it one of these days:)

Reteta-Ina, A simple recipe and definitely nice to make your own homemade version of mascarpone. Thank you for your comment and for stopping by. I appreciate it.

Mihaela said...

Ellie, revin sa iti spun ca te asteapta un premiu si o floare la mine pe blog! Sa ai o zi minunata! :)

megi said...

Ellie, I made the mascarpone cheese yesterday, left it in the fridge overnight and this morning I tasted it. One word, fantastic, thank you so much for sharing this. I was planning on making a few things with mascarpone, can't wait to try them with my homemade, organic cheese!

Ellie said...

Megi,I am so excited that you like the homemade version:). That's wonderful!
I know that it does take a bit of time...but I think it's totally worth it:).
Thank you for trying out the recipe and for coming back to let me know how it went. Your valuable input is greatly appreciated...so kind of you to take the time.

TRICIA said...

The first cheese I ever made and it was perfect. I found your blog while surfing Montana. I am moving to Boulder from Wisconsin this summer. From your pictures it looks like the same area of Montana you are from. Beautiful!

Ellie said...

Tricia, I am so glad you had success with the mascarpone. Thank you for your feedback...I really appreciate it.
It's nice that you will be moving to Montana, I think you will like it, especially if you love the outdoors with mostly peace and quiet:)...
Montana is indeed beautiful!

Thanks for stopping by and for taking the time to comment.

Have a great day!

Island Vittles said...

thanks so much for the link...I hope you enjoyed your mascarpone as much as we did! I used it to make a Tiramisu Cheesecake that was out of this world! theresa

Ellie said...

Theresa, Thanks for stopping by...and thank YOU for the inspiration. We LOVED the mascarpone....and the tiramisu cheesecake sounds fabulous!

Jill of all Trades said...

Oh you did this not too long ago! I'm attempting to make it right now using Mother Earth New's article (no pics). I too was getting frustrated - 30 minutes and not a notch beyond 155! Desperate for a blogger with pictures and "regular gal" experience, I stumbled upon your blog. I tried the direct heat method, too and it worked like a charm. You are correct - just stir constantly to avoid the scorching. Here's hoping the rest of the cassata cake I'm using the cheese in turns out! Thanks so much for the post!!

Ellie said...

Jill, You are welcome! I am so happy I could be of help...glad to know that I wasn't the only one to have the problem with the bain maire( at one point I thought it was just me:)). And making a cassata cake absolutely delicious!

Thanks for stopping by... and taking the time to share your feedback. I appreciate it!

Nicole said...

Just a note to say thank you. This is my second time making this recipe. Picked up some cream near date for only $1.50. Then I walked past the cheese area and noticed a small tub of mascarpone for >$5.50. Add in a lemon for $.78 and I am still way ahead.

I like to add a little (homemade) chocolate sauce and then use as a dip - fruits, waffles, bagels, fingers....

Ellie said...

Nicole, That's just wonderful! Thank you also for taking the time to stop by and share your feedback... It always makes my day when a recipe I post is a success:).

I am so glad you made the mascarpone cheese... It's always neat to make a homemade version, and as you've noticed sometimes cheaper. Glad it worked out for you... moneywise as well.

Love how you add some chocolate sauce... Haven't yet tried that, but it sounds absolutely delicious!