Learn how to make the famous caciotta cheese in a few simple steps! With origins dating back to Roman times, the art of making caciotta uses cow's milk or a combination of cow's and sheep's milk. The cheese-making process first curdles the milk which form the curds, then the cheese is firmly pressed into little round baskets.
This recipe makes about 10-12 cheese rounds
How to make Caciotta
Add the salt into a large saucepan with the milk and stir until dissolved. Heat milk to 39° C (102°F). Remove from heat and add the rennet, stirring slowly for about 1 minute.Cover and let rest for about 15 minutes.
When you uncover, you will notice the milk has started to curdle. With a knife, gently cut a cross into the top. Cover and wait another 10 minutes. Repeat 3 or 4 more times until about 45 minutes has passed and the top of the milk is cut into squares.
Gently pour the solid (curds) into large baskets and allow the liquid (whey) to run off. Once all the liquid has run off, place the curds into smaller baskets. Put a slice of lemon zest on top and allow the liquid to continue draining off. Store in the refrigerator and serve for up to 3 days. (On the third day, this cheese is perfect for using in Ravioli or in cooking, as it will have dried out slightly).
Variations: How to make Caciotta Stagionata
Rather than putting the baskets in the fridge, Caciotta can be dried and become a grated cheese. Dip each basket in salamoia (saturated salt & water solution, 1 part salt to 3 parts water) first and leave out to dry. Turn each day so it dries evenly. After about a week to10 days it is ready. You can also add chili pepper, and it becomes a spicy cheese!