Saturday, November 6, 2010

Make Your Own Seasoned Mascarpone Cheese (plus 3 ways to use it) - Simple Saturday

I know what you're saying, "Make my own Mascarpone cheese is a Simple Saturday?"
Here's the truth: it takes 2 ingredients to make your own (very expensive in the store) Italian Cream Cheese (Mascarpone). Then, to make it even more special (didn't that sound like Giada?)- I added Italian seasonings.
And then, and then... I'll suggest a few ways to use this creamy, flavorful cheese you can make yourself.
Italian Seasoned Mascarpone Cheese

RECIPE: Italian Seasoned Mascarpone Cheese-

2 cups Heavy Whipping Cream

1 Tbls. Lemon Juice

1 Tbls of Italian Seasoning blend or a mixture of Oregano, Thyme, Basil, salt and pepper

1) Pour about 2 inches of water into a deep saucepan, place a bowl over the saucepan of water. Bring the water to a low simmer.

2) Pour the cream into the bowl and stir often until the cream heats to 190F. (If you don't have a thermometer - best guess is about 20 minutes and it will have tiny bubbles forming around the very edge.)

3) When the cream reaches the proper temperature, pour in the lemon juice and continue to heat the cream and stir while the cream curdles gently and becomes thick enough to give a drag to the spoon and definitely covers the back of the spoon.
4) Stir in the seasonings well, then remove the bowl from the pan of water and the heat. Let the bowl of cream rest and cool down for about 30 minutes to an hour.
5) Prepare a sieve lined with 4 layers of damp cheese cloth. Gently pour the mixture through the sieve placed over a bowl.
6) Place bowl and sieve in the refrigerator overnight or for at least 12 hours. When ready, use a spoon to scoop out your cheese (glorious cheese) into a container. Keep covered in the refrigerator and use within 5 days, preferably.

RECIPE: Pumpkin Baked Eggs w/ Italian Mascarpone

Ingredients -
1 Egg for each person

Pumpkin puree
Italian Mascarpone

Chopped Fresh Basil

) Butter each ramekin or oven proof bowl (1 per person)

2) Into each ramekin, place 1 Tablespoon of Pumpkin Puree, 1 Tablespoon of Italian Mascarpone, then a pinch of fresh chopped basil. On top of these flavors, add one fresh egg and season with salt and pepper.

3) In a preheated 350F oven, place a deep sided casserole dish or baking pan. Place the filled ramekins into the large baking pan and carefully pour boiling water into the baking pan and around the egg dishes (NOT into the egg dishes). Pour until the water is about 1/3 the way up the ramekins. You are creating a Bain Marie - a wonderful technique for slow cooking eggs and custard type dishes.
4) Bake for about 15-17 minutes (depending on how well done you prefer your eggs). Don't forget the eggs will continue to cook a bit when removed from the oven, just because the heat inside.

5) Serve the eggs in the ramekins on a heat proof dish.

1) Stir a Tablespoon of Italian Mascarpone into your bowl of hot Tomato Soup, to give it a little creamy zing

2) Toast baguette slices, then top with a dollop of Italian Mascarpone and garnished with a Sauteed Mushroom slice.

You probably have a few more ideas that would be great with Italian Seasoned Mascarpone, right? I would love to read them and others would love for you to share them. Feel free to leave them in the comments. Thanks for stopping by.


The Urban Baker said...

wow, this is ambitious! I love the pumpkin-egg idea as well! this is gorgeous!

Couscous & Consciousness said...

Awesome. I have been making my own ricotta and mizithra lately, but am yet to try mascarpone - obviously I need to rectify that. Looks very simple, and I love the way you have seasoned it and used it.
Sue :-)

Nancy said...

Perfect!! I have some leftover whipping cream and was wondering what to do with it and... ta da.. here is my answer!!

I am seriously going to have to try the pumpkin eggs.. those look amazing!!!

Hope you had fun at FoodbuzzFest!!

Khali//Bandit and the Scene Stealers said...

WOW! love it! I want to try more in the kitchen and you always have ideas for me. thanks!