a few months ago, i think it was around easter, i tried my hand at making duck prosciutto. it was good, though way too salty. it took a long time to dry out, and wasn’t any better than the prosciuttos that we’ve bought at the deli. that prosciutto was, in some ways, a blessing. the prosciutto taught me that, while some things are infinitely better from scratch, or homemade, others just are not worth the effort.
cake? better from scratch. almost always. bread? yup. homemade, please. cheese? you betcha.
this weekend, perhaps inspired by the semana italiano festival, but more likely inspired by the efforts of deb*, i made ricotta cheese. you shouldn’t be surprised. i love cheese. if were to take two food items with me to a desert island, i would take cheese and tomatoes. i could subsist off of salata caprese and coconut, i could. but, yeah. making my own cheese. i suspect that i will do this from time to time until i grow up, get a real job, have kids and not have any time to bake or cook. (except that i will find a way to bake and cook even after i have kids.) i could see this being a really awesome science experiment for kids, though. i think if my niece has a science fair next year, i might suggest that she work out the science of cheese** – she who loves cheese almost as much as i do. moreso if it’s cheddar or mozzarella.
*: a note on my relationship with deb and her blog, and similarly my relationship with bon appetit. rachel commented a while back that i am often quick to try a new recipe, either on deb’s blog, or from the most recent issue of bon appetit. and it’s true. but that’s not because i have an inordinate amount of time on my hands – i don’t. it’s more because i often feel so completely overwhelmed by the number of recipes out there in the big wide open world that the easiest thing for me to do is to eat whatever is closest to me. i’m sure that such a skill will be useful in a zombieapocolypse.
**: science fair projects are meant to be about things that we already know about, so that we can test the children. at my school, we didn’t have a science fair quite so much as we had a “share your interest” fair. i may or may not have done a project on andrew lloyd webber. surely there was some science involved in the phantom…