Mature Sheep's Milk Ricotta
Together with pecorino cheese, ricotta made with sheep or cow's milk has represented for decades the main foodstuff in the diet of the shepherds who exploited the most suitable areas for their breeding activities, often the most marginal ones. Especially for mature ricotta made with sheep's milk, there is a deep link with the transhumant shepherds' need to dry the products with natural methods in order to transport and preserve them easily. In some areas, it is still very difficult to sell fresh ricotta, which should be eaten on the same production day.
Current Production Area in the Park: Its production involves the whole area of Gran Sasso e Monti della Laga National Park.
Mature ricotta is a traditional product of Regione Abruzzo and Lazio, while fresh ricotta is a traditional product of Regione Marche. Ricotta is obtained from the processing of whey resulting from the whole sheep's milk, heated at a temperature of about 78-85°C, varying according to the compactness required. The high temperature favors the flocculation of the whey proteins which, coming to the surface, bring with them also the residual fat of the whey to form the ricotta that can be gathered in the molds with the skimmer and put on special tables. Once the temperature is lowered and the residual whey has been taken away, the ricotta is ready for maturation. At the end of the maturation process, we have a product preserving fragrance and softness, with the characteristic taste of the milk with which it has been produced, with the essences of the herbs and the fodders used to feed the animals.
Product Availability: Ricotta is for sale all year round.