"Cheese- milk's leap toward immortality." ~ Clifton Fadiman
I was just reading a great blog post about goats today on LA Fuji Mama (did you know goat is the most widely consumed meat on the planet?) when I remembered that I forgot to post Part II of the cheese making party! At Cate's party in addition to the mozzarella, we also made a big wad of chèvre. It was absolutely scrumptious but would I make it again? Probably not. Unless you have the inside track on some cheap goat's milk, it's not very cost effective. However, I do love using chèvre in recipes, it's delish and gives it some tang that you don't get with using cheeses from cows. Try subbing it in on your pizzas or tarts.
Here's the chèvre recipe that we used at Cate's:
1 gallon pasteurized whole goat's milk
1 gallon direct set chèvre set
cheese making salt
sterile 18" square piece cheese cloth/muslin
- Pour milk into a sterilized 6 quart non-reactive pot.
- Heat milk to 86 degrees or place in sink of hot water to raise temperature.
- Add starter and let sit 5 minutes to re-hydrate. Stir in using an up and down motion without breaking through the surface of the milk.
- Cover and let sit for 12 hours at 72 degrees. (We placed ours on a seed starting mat, but you could fill a cooler with hot water and set it on there or turn your oven on low/then turn it off/then set it in there.)
- When whey is clear or clean break* is achieved, carefully scoop out curds into sieve lined with cheese cloth and tie four corners. Hang and let drain 6-12 hours until desired consistency. The longer it drains the firmer it'll be. (We hung the cheese and cloth off of Cate's patent cheese hanging system AKA "a hanger.")
- Mix in salt. A little bit more whey may drain out after salt is added if cheese is soft.
- Can be stored for a week, maybe a bit more.
* "Clean break" can be done by inserting a sterilized implement into the whey at a 45 degrees angle and lifted through the surface, the curds will appear to 'crack' instead of having a soft yogurt like texture. If it doesn't break easily, let it sit for some more.