Sunday, July 03, 2011

Say cheese!

Against your better judgment, I decided to give the raw milk a try.  I am now the owner of one herd share from Pasture's Delights.  I'll write more about this topic at another time, as this move on my part has generated a lot of internal debate and philosophising, and I'm still hashing some of that out.
My one share entitles me to approximately a gallon of milk a week.  I like milk, but living alone, I am finding that to be a lot of milk to deal with.  So I decided to try making some cheese.

First up, because it was easiest, was mascarpone, made from the cream I skimmed off one of the gallons.  I used this recipe and it turned out fine, at least as far as I know.  I think the only mascarpone I have had has been in Italian desserts, and at that time I did not know what I was eating.

I think this is only the second time I have used this double boiler in 20 years.
Most of this was mixed with honey and eaten on rhubarb muffins.  And it was good!

I don't know why this photo is so yellow - the cheese is actually white.
I also used some to make The Most Voluptuous Cauliflower, from New York Times Cookbook.  (I tried adding the Amazon link to that book, but either Blogger or Amazon is not playing nicely today.)  Also good.

Today I decided to try my hand at ricotta made from whole milk, using a recipe that came with Ricki's Cheesemaking Kit for Mozzarella and Ricotta (ordered from here).

Looks like cheese to me!
I did not get the yield I expected.  And the curds are dry.  There are a lot of things I have learned from books, but I'm thinking I could really benefit from attending a cheesemaking workshop.  Also, there is a lot of leftover whey which, unless one is fattening a hog or has time to go on a baking binge, is kind of useless.  I'm going to try watering my strawberries with it - since I used citric acid to make the cheese, they should love it.

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