Yesterday I made this almond ricotta thanks to inspiration from my friend Frances @blissfullynurtured, and it turned out so delicious I thought I’d write it down here in the blog for easy referencing.
I’ve made ricotta many times before with cashews, and I’d assume if you are allergic to nuts you could try making it with a seed instead or even tofu.
This time, I decided to try adding a probiotic capsule and letting it culture a bit on the counter before refrigeration. I left it out maybe 6-9 hours and tasted it when I got home from work- perfect. The culturing just adds that little bit extra, in my opinion, to make it taste more rounded and complex. Also, I added in lemon zest which really went beautifully! You could flavor it any way you like- herbs, a dark strong olive oil, pepper, chiles, garlic, or go sweet with vanilla or almond extract etc.
Spread onto toast with jam or honey/agave (my kids LOVED it like this), spread on thick cut tomatoes with a drizzle of good balsamic and basil, broil or bake or grill a peach and dollop some in the middle, mix with some pesto and toss with pasta or roasted veggies, theres so many ways to use it!
As always, I encourage you to use this “recipe” as more of a jumping off point, and adjust / play around with the consistency and flavors to make it just right for you! There is no right and wrong and the recipe is super forgiving. If you make it, I’d LOVE to see it- tag me on instagram @mamaeatsplants or email me firstname.lastname@example.org.
cultured almond ricotta
1 cup blanched slivered almonds, soaked overnight or at least 4 hours (I found these in the bulk section, alternatively you can use whole almonds and peel in the morning after soaking, or use cashews and no peeling is required)
1/2 tsp lemon zest and 1 teaspoon lemon juice (optional0 sub whatever flavorings you like)
1/4 cup water + more as needed
salt to taste
1 probiotic capsule (optional but delicious- I used a 100 billion count as that’s what I happened to have in the fridge, but really any good probiotic will do)
Place almonds in the food processor. Add in the lemon juice + zest, the water and a few pinches salt. Blend in the food processor until creamy, stopping to check consistency and scrape down the sides as needed, or adding tiny bits of water as you see fit. When the consistency is how you like it, taste and check for salt and other flavorings and adjust as needed.
Transfer to a jar and mix through the probiotic capsule- try to use a non reactive spoon, like wood. I actually just pulsed it for a second or two in the food processor, purely for ease, but I know it’s said that metal can deactivate the probiotic. I haven’t had that experience. So, up to you.
Put the lid on loosely and wrap a kitchen towel over it (for insulation and keeping out light). Let sit for 2-8 hours, depending on how warm it is in your house, and how tangy you want the final product. You can smell or taste a bit as it goes to judge how its progressing. Once it tastes right to you, transfer to fridge and keep there- should keep over a week.