How To Make Mascarpone Cheese

On Sunday I was scrolling through Instagram when The Pioneer Woman tempted me with the most delicious bowl of shrimp and grits. You know you spent four years in the south when you can be tempted by such things. I promptly looked up the recipe and started adding the ingredients to my weekly Walmart Grocery Pickup order. The recipe called for mascarpone cheese, which my Walmart didn't carry. I was Googling around looking for a mascarpone substitute when I found an incredibly easy recipe to make your own. 

I've been tempted by the idea of cheese making for a while now. Derek and I made our own Ricotta cheese one time when we were living in North Carolina, so I'd had a small amount of experience. As it turns out to make mascarpone, all you need is some heavy cream, and a tablespoon of lemon juice. I added them to my cart at Walmart and was on my way to some delicious shrimp and grits. If you've been tempted by the art of cheese making, this one is super easy for a beginner. 

2 cups heavy cream
1 tablespoon lemon juice

In a saucepan over low heat, slowly bring the heavy cream to a low simmer. The temperature should climax at 180° F, and the goal is to try to keep it around there. Let the cream simmer at 180° F for about 3 minutes, then add in the lemon juice and simmer for another 3 minutes.

Remove the pan from heat, and let the mixture cool to room temperature. I find it's best to step away for just half an hour. 

Fill a small strainer with several layers of cheesecloth (I use 3 layers) and put a small bowl under the strainer. Pour the cooled mascarpone mixture into the cheesecloth and stick the entire bowl with the cheese and cheesecloth in the fridge overnight to strain out the whey. My cheese usually releases only a few tablespoons of whey, but the mascarpone still comes out thick and creamy in the morning.

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