Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Buttermilk Cheese

A while back Joel and I took a cheese making class at the Complete Gourmet. I have, several times since that, tried to make goat cheese using the recipe for a cows milk cheese we made in class, to no avail. One thing she specifically said in class is that ultra pasteurized milk is not good for cheese making. I finally concluded that that was the reason my cheese would not set up (it would separate but the curds were so small, I would end up with about a tablespoon remaining in the cheesecloth.) and abandoned the idea all together. Sigh.

Then I saw this post over at One Couples Kitchen http://www.onecoupleskitchen.com/ and was excited to try again. I figured maybe they had the one recipe that would work! It did not work for me and I must say I feel a little bitter they are all happy and cheesy and I am sad and without.

That said, I pressed on. I made a cheese out of Buttermilk. I thought that might give me the tang I craved. It was really good, not goat, but a good sub in a pinch. Someone suggested it would be great in stuffed shells…..maybe we will see more on that later??? Hmmmm.

For now, here is what I did. I don’t think the lemon was necessary, but probably gave some extra tang. I made this up, so for all I know the cream wasn’t necessary, but I had it and needed to use it. Note: there is proper cheese making cloth that you can get at Complete Gourmet and I am sure Sur la Table, however you can use that stuff from the grocery store, just double up.

8 c. buttermilk
1 c. heavy whipping cream
½ c. half and half
1 tbs lemon juice (I used fresh, but I have used concentrate before…your call)
1 tsp course salt
Copious amounts of pepper

Heat the first three ingredients slowly until you see the curds and whey separate (best way to describe is your milk looks like you left it in sippy cup underneath your car seat for a week in the heat, floating in what looks like lemonade?) . Add the lemon. Let sit a minute or two off of the heat and slowly pour or ladle though cheesecloth lined colander. Once a good portion of the liquid is out salt and pepper the curds and smoosh (yep that is an official cooking term) about until mixed. Bundle the cheese cloth and then hang for about an hour to let drip. The longer you let it hang the drier it will get.

Spread and enjoy.  Next time I am going to try my hand at Chevre with this cool kit.  I will post up how it goes.

Remember the Green Duck contest…75 buck guys!


Anonymous said...

I also tried to do this with regular milk and had the same results. I may have to try this recipe.How about a cheese ball with this cheese?

Talita said...

I love homemade cheese and I always do cottage cheese. This is a very interesting recipe!

Ricardo said...

That looks quite good and delicious, I will too be making my own cheese, so keep an eye out cheese lover....hehe...kisses xxx

Chris said...

Well damn, you're awesome. I've got a ricotta and a mozzarella recipe I've been wanting to try but haven't gotten to it yet. Nicely done!

Mommy Gourmet said...

I think it would be perfect in a cheese ball Ann! In fact it would be pretty awesome in the one you made!
Talita, I have never made cottage cheese, I am going to have to look that up!
Ricardo... I will..I am watching you....:)

The Husband said...

I'll have to try this. It looks great. Glad it worked out and you can now be happy and cheesy too!

Joie de vivre said...

Mommy, this sounds so cool! I've only made yogurt cheese before with a yogurt strainer. This sounds like a really fun project.

Bulgarian style cultured buttermilk is buttermilk that is made from cultures. (Easy answer huh?) But I've found the regular buttermilk in the stores isn't really buttermilk at all but thickened milk with little tang and no cultures in it. The bulgarian buttermilk is tangy with cultures. I like it way better. I find it in our local WalMart. I like to drink it plain, like tangy yogurt, while the regular buttermilk is yucky to drink plain to me. Thanks for visiting! I'm looking forward to a cottage cheese post from you in the future!

Sinful Southern Sweets said...

Well, that doesn't look too intimidating. I always thought cheese was a terribly complicated process. I may have to give this a try!

Sweet and Savory said...

I am impressed that you make your own cheese. I will have to reread this post 100 times to motivate me, to give it a try.

Anonymous said...

I make butter. Instead of saving the buttermilk for baking, I'm going to see what happens when I use it for your cheese. Your recipe sounds so similar to making ricotta that I don't think I can miss!