I love making cheese. If you love cheese, are a foodie, and have never done this before, I highly recommend it. I always get satisfaction when the milk starts to curdle and then coagulate, turning into cheese. I usually make fresh mozzarella cheese, but today I’m making Paneer Cheese and Goat Cheese.
The first cheese I made was Paneer and it was super simple! (The recipe is below.) I also made a herbed cheese crumble with some of it, that’s great to sprinkle on salads.
Not satisfied with just my cows’ milk cheese, I then proceeded to make some goat cheese! This cheese turned out so creamy and luscious that I may never buy goat cheese again.
1 gallon of whole milk
½ cup heavy cream
juice of 1 lemon (about 5 Tablespoons)
5 drops of liquid Rennet
Pour milk and cream into a large stainless steel pot. Do not use aluminum or cast iron! Heat until it is just about to boil (75 degrees F).
Turn off heat and add the lemon juice and rennet. Stir a few times with a wire whisk to blend together. Wait a few moments and stir again.
While you’re waiting set up a large bowl with about 4 layers of cheesecloth. You will be pouring the finished product through this cheesecloth, allowing the whey to go through and the curds will be caught in the cheesecloth. Set this aside.
Back to the cheese. Give it a stir. By now you should start to see solid curds separating from the whey. You have the option to remove the curd with a slotted spoon and place it into the cheesecloth; or if your bowl is big enough go ahead and pour the whey through the cheesecloth capturing the curds.
Next you want to wrap the curds/cheese in the cheesecloth. I tied it and hung it to drain out more of the whey.
Once the liquid had stopped dripping, I opened the cheesecloth and tasted it. It was creamy but bland. That’s when I added some sea salt. I mixed it together and then shaped the cheese back into the cheesecloth, wrapped it up tightly and placed it in a colander in the fridge. I placed something heavy on top of it to press down and continue to remove any excess whey.
When I was satisfied with the solidity of the cheese I removed it from the cheesecloth. I covered it in a coarse salt and allowed it to set overnight. Before serving remove all the excess salt.
Yield: 10 inch log
1 quart of goats’ milk
3 Tablespoons of lemon juice
2 drops liquid Rennet
Pour goats’ milk into a large stainless steel pot. Do not use aluminum or cast iron! Heat until it is just about to boil (75 degrees F).
Turn off heat and add the lemon juice and rennet. Stir a few times with a wire whisk to blend together. Wait a few moments and stir again. I let this sit for about 4 hours and got great results/yield.
Making the goat cheese was different. You don’t get large curds, you hardly get curds. What you will see is a slight separation.
Set up a large bowl with about 4 layers of cheesecloth. You will be pouring the finished product through this cheesecloth. Then you can hang the cheesecloth to drain out any of the excess liquid. I did this for about an hour until I heard no more dripping.
Open the cheesecloth and put the cheese into a bowl. At this point you can season it anyway you’d like. I just added sea salt. Then place it on some saran wrap and roll it into a log shape. Cover and refrigerate. The longer you refrigerate this cheese the drier and more flavorful it becomes.
The next day I cut the log into 3 pieces. I rolled one in fresh black pepper, the other in some herbs, and the third I left plain… perhaps to enjoy with some nuts and honey!