cheese making and bread baking

Today I made some cheese. Farmers cheese which is somewhat soft and versatile due to its subtle flavor. I also had to make bread, because I needed something to put my cheese on and I needed to use some of the whey that was left over. Also, its been rather cold; turning on the oven warms up the kitchen and my bedroom quite nicely.

Lets begin: I went to whole foods to get some Straus Organic milk, because there is no other way that I would buy milk. (bonus: once I sanitize the glass bottle, it is the perfect vessel for my kombucha! note: I tasted the kombucha today and it is delicious. slightly sweet and a bit effervescent but it still needs 1 or 2 more days). Anyways, I bought a gallon of milk, and poured it into a large pot, along with a generous pinch of salt.


milk in the pot. The yellow is the cream which has started to melt.

I boiled the milk until the edges started to bubble and it was just at boiling, reading 185-190 on a thermometer. While the milk was boiling, I squeezed 1/4 cup of lemon juice to have at the ready. Turning off the flame, I poured in the lemon juice, and gave it a stir. It started to curdle almost immediately, but I let it sit for 7-8 minutes to continue the process.


The curds begin to form

While the milk was curdling, I lined a colander with some cheesecloth, and set it in the sink over a bowl (in order to catch they whey). Then, I poured everything into said colander/cheesecloth contraption. I let it drain for about an hour, with a weight on top, and gave it an occasional squeeze. The final product is below.


cheese in the forefront. whey in the background.

Verdict: its really good. Very mild flavor, next time I will add more salt. It also has the potential to be flavored with some herbs and spices. I sliced some and ate it atop a salad with some balsamic vinegar and it was really good. It would make an excellent filling for lasagna, or ravioli, or on top of pizza. Or, on bread…

…I had a lot of whey leftover, and wanted to use some before storing it in the refrigerator. I had read that it can be used in place of water and/or milk in baking. Last week I made a whole wheat loaf adapted from the King Arthur website. I decided to go off of that recipe again, but adapt it to my whey. I replaced the water and evaporated milk with whey, and used half agave and half molasses for the sweetener. I also reduced the oil in the recipe from 1/4 C to 1/8 C.


ready to go into the oven! note the bubble on top…


final product! the apples and persimmon in the background are from the farmers market and are providing my kombucha some company. and