Baking fresh bread is all well and good but feels like it’s been done a hundred times over in the last few months, so may I please present to you my prediction for the next big thing I reckon we all should be making in our iso lives: cheese. Why cheese you ask? Well, I made some last night and it was so absurdly easy, I was surprised it hasn’t been a huge at-home-cooking trend already.

Last night I tuned in to a little group video to learn how to make ricotta from scratch, with the guidance of Marly from Omnom Cheese Making. It honestly took three ingredients and about an hour to pull it all together and I wound up with a little ricotta basket absolutely chockers with fresh, handmade ricotta.

Considering all I needed was some cheese salt (which is just non-iodized salt), two litres of full cream milk, and citric acid mixed in with 30ml of water to make a good 400g of cheese, I don’t know how it’s not already a huge thing for everyone cooking their way through the pandemic.

All I had to do was heat the milk up to a certain temperature, mix in the salt and then quickly stir in the citric acid solution and leave it to all separate into curds and whey. After I let it all sit and soak for a bit I scooped out the curds and popped it into a little ricotta basket to drain for a bit and Bob’s your uncle, you got cheese, baby.

cheese making review isolation cooking
Look! I made this!!

I’m gonna make cannelloni tonight, and then try and make a different cheese real soon.

One thing that Marly taught me last night was that cheeses like ricotta are also pretty forgiving processes, which is great for those of us who would somehow set cereal on fire given half the chance.

I also have no idea how I haven’t been doing this before after I tried to make fresh bread and it ended up wildly lopsided.

Hell, maybe even we can keep making bread but then also make cheese while the loaf’s in the oven and then we can all have fresh bread and cheese to snack on at home.

Apparently, you can even use the whey (which is pretty much water with bulk protein in it) to make sourdough starter, too. Now that’s a gamechanger.

Think of how much more luxe and fancy all your future cheeseboards will be when you can chuck in a cheese you’ve actually made yourself, immediately positioning yourself as the ultimate snack legend among your mates.

You can cop yourself a good cheese-making kit online at a few different places like The Cheesemaker, Green Living Aus, Distillery King and Omnom (I’ve got the Mediterranean one from Omnom, which will be restocked soon) and Marly stressed that you don’t really need all the fancy bells and whistles to make cheese, just as long as you’ve got the right ingredients.

And if you wanna learn how to make burrata – that insanely yum and rich cheese that’s like the poached egg of cheeses – Marly’s doing a workshop and pairing it with some wines from the Taylor Made team as well, which you can register for over here.