Westcombe ricotta is produced from the by-product of Tom at Westcombe Dairy's Cheddar-making process.
Tom will heat a batch of whey for a prolonged period until its proteins denature and begin to coagulate into fragile white clumps. Once solid enough to be moulded, the coagulated proteins are salted and then ladled into colander-like moulds and the liquid allowed to drain off.Moisture will slowly continue to drain out as the ricotta sits in its mould. This tub weighs approximately 1kg or in our shops we sell it in 250g pots.
A fundamental part of coagulating milk and making cheese is the removal of whey—the liquid component of milk. The majority of the whey's composition is water, but held in solution are a great diversity of bacteria, enzymes and proteins. For this reason, whey has good potential—in the dairy and beyond—but is commonly discarded by the cheesemaker as a waste product due in large part to its acid properties and its sheer volume.