Saturday, April 24, 2010

Cream Cheese


1 gallon goat's milk (store-bought cow's milk will work too!)
¼ tsp. direct set mesophilic-m culture
2 Tbsp. diluted rennet (add 1 drop of rennet to 5 Tbsp. cool water)


In a large pot add goat's milk. Heat milk to 80 degrees. Remove from heat and add the mesophilic-m culture and stir will. Add the rennet and stir. Cover the pan and let sit undisturbed at room temperature for 12 to 18 hours.

After the time is up, what you have in the pot should look like very thick yogurt. Now you will drain and drip your cheese.

Line a colander with your clean cheesecloth. You can use a pillowcase if you do not have cheesecloth. Set this colander in a large bowl to catch the whey. Now drain your thick, yogurt-looking cheese into this cloth. Gather up the cloth and tie it tightly. Now you need to hang it somewhere so that the remaining whey will drip out. Generally, I hang it over the kitchen sink, so that it drips into the sink. Now let your cream cheese drain for about 6 to 8 hours. You can speed this process along by stirring the cream cheese about halfway through the time, and you can do it again if you need to.

When it is completed, what you have left is your cream cheese! You can salt it a bit or not; that is up to you. It is ready to be used right away over a homemade bagel, or you can use it for cooking or even cheesecake! You can also put some of the cream cheese in a food processor and blend it up a lot and you will end up with a great substitute for sour cream.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Farmer's Cheese


1 gallon whole milk
1 pinch salt
1 large lemon, juiced


Pour the milk into a large pot, and stir in a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally to prevent the milk from scorching on the bottom of the pot.

When the milk begins to boil (small bubbles will first appear at the edges or if using a thermometer 190 degrees F ), turn off the heat. Stir lemon juice into the milk, and the milk will curdle. You may need to wait 5 or 10 minutes.

Line a sieve or colander with a cheesecloth, and pour the milk through the cloth to catch the curds. What is left in the cheesecloth is the Farmer’s Cheese. The liquid is the whey. Some people keep the whey and drink it, but I throw it away. Gather the cloth around the cheese, and squeeze out as much of the whey as you can. Wrap in plastic, or place in an airtight container. Store in the refrigerator.