help get me started making simple cheeses?

Discussion in 'Egg, Chicken, & Other Favorite Recipes' started by patandchickens, Aug 27, 2008.

  1. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    I apologize if the answer to this is buried somewhere in the six point two million pages of MissPrissy's yogurt-and-cheese thread, but I am on dialup with cranky kids today and at least didn't see it in the parts of the thread I was able to look at.

    Say you wanted to try making some sort(s) of simple cheese, like ricotta and mozzarella. And say that you don't know where to buy a 'kit' for less than $100, and even if you could find one, let's say you felt disinclined to drop that much change and would rather buy a book and a bottle 'o rennet and not much else, if possible [​IMG] (*does* that sound possible?)

    Any suggestions for a good book to get started with, and what minimal supplies a person would need, beyond what can be scrounged around the house already?

    Oh, another question -- what sort of yield does one get, e.g. how much ricotta or mozzarella or like that might one expect to get from say a gallon of whole milk?

    Thanks very much for any suggestions,

  2. bluebirdfarm

    bluebirdfarm Songster

    hi riccki carroll has a good book for beginning cheesemakers, it is at new england cheesemakers company.
    also there are some recipes on her web site .

    Handed down by word of mouth to Rosanne Coreano of NY, this recipe produces a rather mild cheese. It is eaten either by itself or enjoyed on Bruchetta or toast, drizzled with olive oil, a pinch of garlic salt and a slice of ripe tomatoe, Yum!

    1 gallon milk
    1tsp rennet
    2pinches salt
    Heat the milk to luke warm (86-90F)and add the rennet. Turn off heat and let set for about 40 minutes.

    After the milk has set turn the heat back on to low and heat again for about 2 minutes. Using a slotted spoon pull the curds to the side of the pot. Keep moving the curds for about 10 minutes with the slotted spoon. (This breaks up the curd and keeps them drain in.)

    Remove the curds from the pot with your slotted spoon and place into a basket. (our M222 or M232 is ideal for this) Return the basket with the curds in it back into the whey and cover the curds with the whey pressing the curds into the basket with your hands.

    Remove the basket from the whey and set another mold inside of the first one and put an 6-8oz. glass of water on top of it. (this is used as a weight for pressing the cheese. Press this way for 2 hours.

    Take out the cheese and turn over, salt to taste, return to the basket and continue pressing for 1 and a half hours longer. Remove the cheese from the press and refrigerate.

    This cheese will have a 3 day shelf life. So get that Bruchetta and Enjoy!
  3. bluebirdfarm

    bluebirdfarm Songster

    ps , are you using fresh milk ?
    i think the best cheese is made from fresh .
    you have trouble when using homoginized milk due to the changes that the process makes to the molecules of the milk.
  4. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    I would have to use pasteurized (not ultrapasteurized) homogenized milk from our local dairy (but it *is* local, and ever so much tastier than supermarket milk, so I think it is younger) - would that be ok? I do not know of any source of raw milk around here, although I think some brand of filtered-rather-than-pasteurized *might* exist?

    (edited to add: Oooo, thanks for the link! Even though the sell-ya-things aspect is not much help to me as I am in Canada, the informational parts answer all sorts of questions I had. Thanks very much.)

    Last edited: Aug 27, 2008
  5. bluebirdfarm

    bluebirdfarm Songster

    btw , there is a GREAt place to buy cultures in your CAnada , it is called danlac, there web site also has information , i didn't know u wree in canada.

    as far as using your source of milk , i would just try it and see what happens , could be it will work nicely , since it is local produced .
    cheesemaking is a kinda hands on thingie , and u will seee when u start what works for your situation. and it is not as hard as it seems it would be , also the hardest part , i thought was the aging process and the pressing , which you won't be doing if u r making ricotta and the fresh cheeses.

    good lick !
  6. ChickenToes

    ChickenToes Songster

    May 14, 2008
    NE Wisconsin
  7. dangerouschicken

    dangerouschicken Will Barter For Coffee

    May 6, 2007
    Columbia Gorge, OR
    My husband loves to make homemade cheese, but he had trouble with ricotta recently. He said using fruit fresh rather than lemon juice worked for him. Maybe I can get him to post here later.
  8. miss_thenorth

    miss_thenorth Songster

    Dec 28, 2007
    SW Ont, Canada
    ok, you asked for simple cheeses. Can't get more simple than:....

    yogurt cheese

    put some cheese cloth, or a coffee filter in a strainer. Put in whatever amount yogurt you have.Cover with another coffee filter. Strain in sink over night. (24 hrs)

    add sugar (and lemon juice if wanted) for a nice dessert type creme cheese. Add garlic, herbs and dehydrated onion for a -spread on your bagel-type of creme cheese. Easy on the herbs--the flavour permeates.

    3 cups of yogurt reduces to one cup of cheese. (i made the herb and garlic type last night, b/c I made home made bagels. (I fed the whey to the chickens--they love it., but you could make buttermilk with the whey if you wanted to)

    Also, ricotta cheese is easy, but you got a link for that.
  9. walkswithdog

    walkswithdog Crowing

    Jul 17, 2008
    DC Region
    Yay cheessseeeeee!

    gourmetsleuth has LOTS of cheese recipes! And links to suppliers. I make cheese at least once a week now. Ricotta and yogurt cheese and buttermilk quark and goat cheese!!!! Yay.

    Ricotta is uber easy. So is yogurt cheese. And wow homemade ricotta makes the other stuff bland as heck.

    I'm making bread and cheese, butter occassionally and once I have eggsss LOOK OUT WORLD.

    I love brioche and ice cream and and...

    I love knowing what's in my food.
  10. Agilityscots

    Agilityscots Songster

    Jun 9, 2007
    Central Ohio
    I posted about cheesemaking a couple months ago...I bought Ricki Carroll's cheesemaking kit complete with book, DVD and supplies for mozzarella and ricotta. Three wasted batches of organic milk slop later, I still have no cheese and have given up. It was a totally frustrating venture. I was also irritated that the exact step I needed to see on the DVD was not shown! (cutting the curd)

    I'd read about Ricki in Barbara Kingsolver's book, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle and so wanted to make my own cheese. Sigh...


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