The Art of Easy Cheesemaking: Curds and Whey
The Art of Easy Cheesemaking
Little Miss Muffet - who remembers the nursery rhyme?
"Little Miss Muffet, sat on her tuffet, eating her curds and whey. Along came a spider, and sat down beside her, and frightened Miss Muffet away.”
The start of cheesemaking for the New Year. With history of cheesemaking in our household for both families, it seems to be the only thing to do on a cold January day!
I received a lot of questions and IMs about the cheesemaking process I shared recently. . .so I wanted to give a quick overview of "how" for those interesting in trying this at home.
Ingredients: Whole milk or half & half (approximately a quart) + apple cider vinegar (or lemon juice)
Tools: Pan, wooden spoon, cheese cloth, thermometer and cheese cloth
(Note: I have used both cow and goat milk. This method works for both.)
Method: Slowly simmer milk on the stove to 140 degrees (small bubbles will appear) in pan. Make sure your pan does NOT have a non-stick coating.
Add 3 to 4 tablespoons of the apple cider vinegar (or lemon juice). Continue to stir until you see the curd separating from the whey. The temperature will go to 180 degrees however do not allow it to boil.
Curds and whey is the generic name given to curdled milk, which separates into lumps of cheese called curds and a liquid called whey.
Strain through cheese cloth and let sit 10 to 15 minutes.
(Note: Save the whey. It's a great probiotic and also can be used for tenderizing meat!)
Drum roll please. . . once finished you will have delicious homemade, soft, fresh, no additives, no preservatives cheese.
Topped with some herbes de provence and kosher salt. Perfect on salads or pizza. It lasts in the fridge for a couple of weeks.
(And it pairs oh so nicely with a bottle of crisp, French wine. . .)