It’s been a busy week to try and keep up but I did make my second batch of Chèvre, for those of you who don’t know me I over salted the first one and fed it straight to the chickens so today is the really the first time my family will taste it!
All of my ingredients were purchased off AMAZON from Standingstonefarms.com, with her kit comes a simple cheesemaking guide to start you out. I have purchased several kits from them and have been pleased with the quality. I used the pamphlet that came with the kit as my guide.
First the milk must be brought to 80 degrees, this is typically done with a hot water bath in the sink. My milk was still a tad bit icy, and I only have 5 gallons of hot water at any time, I opted to use my hotplate and a thick pan to carefully bring the temperature slowly up, you could use a double boiler for this as well, remember I live in a camper so often have to make do.
Then, I added the Mesophilic Culture and let it rest on top for a minute to rehydrate, then began to stir gently.
Stirring cheese is not done in the normal swinging circle fashion as you really do not want to agitate the milk just thoroughly mix. Watch the video for a sample of the proper way to mix additions into milk for cheese.
Watch the video for an example of how to stir when adding amendments.
Next I added one drop of rennet to 1/4 cup of water and added it in the same manner to the milk. Up and down, up and down I stir until I felt the milk was thoroughly mixed.
Next comes the easy part, just cover and set the pan in a keep in a warm spot (72 Degrees give or take) for 12 hours or so while the milk does its thing and changes into curds and whey. The whey can be used in many ways, so many in fact, I decided it was its own blog so watch for that one coming soon.
Line a colander with two layers of cheesecloth and gently use a slotted spoon or such to remove the curds from the whey. Gently place the curds into the drainer and set whey aside to use in a multitude of ways.
Hang the cheese to drain for 12 hours. I started my cheese in the morning and hung it overnight to have ready for breakfast in the morning. Keeping in mind that all times in cheese making vary by a few hours either way, and that the taste of the cheese changes as it ages, so experiment with yours to find your preference but plan to spend 24+ hours supervising this project.
Remove cheese and break up on a plate, sprinkle 1 teaspoon non-iodized salt and roll the cheese into a ball, log or press into a container. If freezing, do not add the salt until thawing.
I chose to offer two options for my family to sample. One I rolled in crushed black peppers and the other I drizzled with raw honey. The cheese tastes “clean” and slightly sweet. Served with homemade 100% whole wheat bread how can I fail with this attempt?
I am really new at this, have any tips or suggestions for me? What is your favorite type of cheese to make from goats milk?
~A Little Faith Farms