Even in the food-obsessed city that I live in, organic ricotta cheese is hard to come by. This would be fine if I didn’t have lasagna-loving kids and a sentiment verging on unhinged neurosis about feeding them non-organic dairy products (you can read why here). So I make my own. The truth is, it may not taste exactly like the real thing, but my creamy, homemade organic “ricotta” takes about 30 seconds to make, and nobody’s the wiser, just healthier.
(On a related note: Once I thought that making homemade mozzarella would be the best way to get it organic. There are many brands of organic cheese on the market, but making it at home seemed like such a good idea. Twelve dollars worth of local organic milk and a few hours later, I had an impossibly squeaky little ball of homemade cheese that somehow missed the tender creamy boat and bounced right on over to the rubber food department.)
So what to do about ricotta? I can take a subway ride to the one store I know that stocks organic ricotta, but this does not bode well for the spontaneous dinner desires of my kids.
The answer lies in organic cottage cheese, which is made by some major organic brands and is much more likely to be carried at the supermarket than organic ricotta. With the whir of a blender or food processor (I have an immersion blender that I use right in the container) one can transform lumpy cottage cheese into a quite decent ricotta substitute. Just blend it until creamy, that easy. Tada!