Ricotta quality: what not to buy

I wanted to share my experiences with Ricotta products and results. I am a great big, fat and balding fan of impastata (Grande’s DelPastaio is a great tasting one) for lots of applications. It is spectacular for cannoli and other dessertish applications. You can use a less fine grained ricotta just fine for calzones, lasagna, stuffed pasta, ravioli, frittore, etc.

They key that I have found is in the ingredients list. The very best tasting and textured ricotta’s have been the ones that are milk, culture, salt and BHT/BHA. The others have stabilizers in them like, carageenan, guar gum, xanthan gum and the like. I find the texture in the stabilized ones to get gumy when mixed with other ingredients, and looses its texture/creaminess when baked to 400F. You may get away with them with a fair mixture of whole milk mozz or the like into it, but that is not how I use it.

The more ‘pure’ ones have a more dairy flavor and smoother consistency. Take a chance and see the difference.