Close-up of Fresh Berries in Sweet Ricotta & Raspberry and Blackberry Sauce, as seen on Barefoot Contessa: Back to the Basics, Season 16.
Recipe courtesy of Ina Garten

Fresh Berries & Sweet Ricotta

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 55 min
  • Active: 45 min
  • Yield: 6 servings


Homemade Ricotta:

Fresh Raspberry Sauce:


  1. Place the Homemade Ricotta in a medium bowl and stir in the sugar, honey, and vanilla. Set aside at room temperature for up to 2 hours. In another bowl, combine the strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries.
  2. When ready to serve, divide the berries among 6 bowls. With an ice cream scoop, place a large dollop of the ricotta in each bowl and drizzle with lots of the Fresh Raspberry Sauce. Sprinkle with the lemon zest and serve.

Homemade Ricotta:

  1. Set a fine-mesh sieve over a deep bowl. Dampen 2 pieces of cheesecloth with water and line the sieve with a double layer of the cheesecloth.
  2. Pour the milk and cream into a medium stainless-steel or enameled pot, such as Le Creuset, and stir in the salt. Bring to a full rolling boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Turn off the heat and pour in the vinegar. Allow the mixture to stand for one minute, until it curdles. It will separate into thick parts (the curds) and milky parts (the whey).
  3. Pour the mixture into the cheesecloth-lined sieve and allow it to drain into the bowl at room temperature for 20 minutes (for soft ricotta) to 25 minutes (for firmer ricotta), occasionally discarding the liquid that collects in the bowl. Transfer the ricotta to a bowl, discarding the cheesecloth and any remaining liquid. Use immediately or cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate.
  4. The ricotta will keep, refrigerated, for 4 to 5 days.

Fresh Raspberry Sauce:

  1. Place the raspberries, sugar, and 1/4 cup water in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and simmer for 4 minutes. Pour the cooked raspberries, the jam, and the framboise into the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade and process until smooth. Pour into a container and chill. The sauce can be refrigerated for up to one week.

Cook’s Note

When doing a repetitive task such as hulling strawberries, do all the hulling first and then all the slicing. It's faster! If you can't find seedless raspberry jam, you can heat 12 ounces of raspberry jam with seeds over medium heat and strain it through a sieve. Be sure to use real jam, not a "fruit spread."