Friday, June 10, 2011


Since the guys make their haloumi cheese, I've been wanting to brave the cheesemaking process myself. So far, they've only made haloumi, failed mozerella, and yogurt (which has never appeared before me--how mysterious!). I went ahead and ordered a small cheesemaking kit from New England Cheesemaking Supply Company so I could try to make a French cheese called Chevre. Now, I'd never tried that cheese before, so I had no idea what it was or what to expect, but Koulis' wife, Camilla, said it was yummy and that she sometimes buys it at her local famer's market.

My kit came in the mail in a small box which I promptly opened so I could store away the rennet and packets of cheese cultures. (Rennet goes in the fridge and packets go in the freezer.) I read the little booklet which was thankfully written in layman's terms. It sounded pretty easy!

Feeling courageous, I got started with the morning's gallon of milk. For me, the smaller batched recipe is great since this is for home use, not the restaurants.

I gathered my ingredients and items:

1 gallon of goat's milk
the Chevre culture packet

A stainless steel pot
a thermometer
my kit provided butter muslin
my kit provided cheese strainers
a tub to drain the cheese in

This is about a two day project depending on how you like your cheese.

Day One:

I heated the milk to 140 degrees for 30 minutes to pasturize it. I drink our goats' milk raw and like it just fine, but since this is a curdling process, it's just safer to pasturize since the cheese will be sitting out to set up.

After the alloted pasturization time, I cooled the milk to 86 degrees F by placing the whole pot in a sink with ice and cold water.

At 86 degrees F I added the Chevre culture packet and put a lid on the pot--for 12-20 hours or until the cheese becomes firm.

Day Two:

I lined my cheese strainers with the butter muslin and ladled globs of the curdled milk into each strainer.

Then I let them drain...

...for 6-12 hours.

Once strained, the cheese is ready to use as is. I added salt because it was a little plain for my taste. I also added Mrs. Dash Tomato Basil seasoning to one batch and fresh dill from the Gigantic Garden to another batch.
It all came out delicious and spreadable on bagles, which is how the kids and I have been eating it. Hubs also put some on a pizza last night and said it was better than mozerella. The kids and I were away camping at the ranch, so we can't vouch for him, but the picture of the pizza looked tasty.

No comments:

Post a Comment