Using just two ingredients, Mascarpone cheese is so simple to make and tastes better than commercial Mascarpone. And it only costs about one third of the price compared to buying it.
Seriously, if you are a fan of this gorgeous cheese you can make up a large batch in minutes (plus overnight chilling).
You can vamp it up somewhat, too, by adding flavours such as fresh herbs, crushed garlic, chilli and the like to the mixture as it simmers.
The cheese will last for about 5 days in the fridge. It is best stored wrapped in clingfilm and in an airtight container.
A few recipe ideas with Mascarpone cheese
- Mascarpone is wonderful added to a tomato-based sauce, such as you would use for pasta: adding a generous dollop of the Mascarpone when the sauce is cooked adds a gorgeous creamyness
- It is one of the key ingredients for Tiramisu – one of my favourite desserts: I have my macaron take on this great dessert using the Marscapone cheese as part of the filling. The recipe for these macarons is here.
- A spoonful or two is great stirred into risotto at the end
- Dollop a few teaspoons of it onto pizza before baking
You can also use it for wonderful savoury cheesecakes. My gorgonzola, pear and walnut cheesecake uses a variety of cheeses, but I often use Marscapone in place of the cream cheese and ricotta.
A near-instant dessert idea
However, can I tempt you with a very simple mousse-type dessert?
You simply mix Mascarpone cheese with melted chocolate (dark, milk or even white) and leave it to set to soft consistency. The same amount of Mascarpone to chocolate is ideal.
Or, using crushed biscuits as the base, maybe adding some fruit of choice and turn this into a very easy cheesecake. My full recipe for quick (nearly instant!) chocolate and cherry trifle pots will follow shortly.
For other easy home-made cheeses, try goat’ cheese. Also cheaper than to buy and infinitely customisable with flavours you love.
Fancy your own goats’ cheese?
If you like goats’ cheese, then you will love making your own, which is also very easy and tastes wonderful.
The recipe for goats’ cheese is here.
Recipe for home-made mascarpone cheese: makes just under 600g
- 600ml double cream
- freshly squeezed juice of one medium lemon (about 1 and a half tablespoons)
(1) Put the cream into a medium pan and heat gently until it starts to simmer.
(2) Stir in the lemon juice: the cream will immediately thicken a little. Keep over the heat for 5 minutes, stirring regularly. The mixture should bubble gently during this time but it should not boil madly. If you have a thermometer, keep the heat at about 88ºC.
(3) Remove from heat and leave cool down fully.
(4) Place a double layer of muslin over in a large sieve and place over a bowl: the sieve needs to stay in place over the bowl without holding it.
(5) Fold over the muslin to cover the top of the sieve place in the fridge overnight: any excess liquid will drip through the muslin, leaving the cheese.
(6) Lift the muslin from the sieve and turn the marscapone cheese out into a bowl. Cover well with clingfilm and chill.