To me, making cheese really is so fulfilling. It is nice taking a gallon of milk, and coming out with cheese! It has its quirks, but it is so fun to be able to eat my own cheese!
All cheesemaking supplies that I use come from here. They have great service, and I really haven’t found any other place I can order these supplies from!
Lactic cheese really is just … milk cheese! I like it because you don’t have to use whole milk. I used 2% milk and it tastes so creamy!
Recipe found here
Print this recipe!
1 gallon 2% milk (or milk of your choice)
1 packet direct set mesophilic starter
3 drops liquid rennet, diluted in 1/3 cup unchlorinated water
cheese salt (or any salt with no iodine in it)
Take the gallon of milk and pour into a large pot. Heat milk to 86 degrees. I use a double boiler so the milk does not burn in the bottom of the pan.
After it reaches 86 degrees, remove from the heat. Add the starter and stir well.
Add 1 teaspoon of the diluted rennet. You do not need the full 1/3 cup of rennet, just 1 tsp. Stir the milk with an up and down motion for one minute to distribute the rennet.
Let milk sit at room temperature for 12 hours. It will have a yogurt like consistency, and a solid curd will have formed.
At this point, the cheese will need to drain to remove the extra liquid. Scoop the cheese into a cheesecloth lined strainer, and let it drain out. As the whey is released, you may be able to hang the cheese to let it drain more efficiently.
Let it drain as long as you want! Mine drained about 18 hours.
Add salt to taste if desired. If I am using this in recipes, salt really is not needed.
Eat up! Or use in other recipes! Store in a covered container in the fridge. It will keep for up to 2 weeks, or freeze if you are not able to use it right away.
I use 2% milk to make this cheese. I love this cheese, because I don’t have to have milk straight from a cow. (But trust me, if I was in a place in my life where I could have a cow or two, I definitely would!) Some cheeses don’t do so well with store bought milk — the milk is pasteurized at too high of a temp when you buy it in the store, and it doesn’t form curds as well as milk straight from a cow. However, this cheese is PERFECT made with store bought milk.
I don’t suppose anyone out there has a cow I could get milk from? No?
Here is the double boiler I use. I got these pots specifically for making cheese. I have 4 of them, all in different sizes. They are pretty thin on the bottom, but they work perfectly for the double boiler purpose.
Heat the milk to 86 degrees. While I wait for the milk to come to temperature, prepare the starer and rennet.
The starter keeps in the freezer, and is just sprinkled on the milk. With the rennet, I take 1/3 cup unchlorinated water (I use distilled water – the chlorine in straight drinking water and make the rennet ineffective. )
After the milk is at 86 degrees, sprinkle the starter on the milk, and stir well. Add 1 teaspoon of the rennet mixture to the milk, and stir from top to bottom, bottom to top, over and over for 1 minute.
Cover the milk, and let it sit for 12 hours (overnight works great). In the morning, it should look like this:
You can see the whey has separated out, and it is the consistency of yogurt.
Take a large strainer, and line it with butter muslin. Scoop the “cheese” into the cheesecloth.
I have this big red scoop I use. I let it drain until it gets to a point where I can hang it to drain better. It totally fills my cheesecloth and strainer!
This is how I have found it works to drain my cheese. My husband has this huge light stand, and it has a long bar on it. I use a wooden spoon to “tie” the cheesecloth around it, and a huge clip to keep it connected to the bar, and above the strainer. I keep the whey — the liquid that drains off. I feed it to my dog, use it in bread, muffins … and really any recipe in place of milk or water. It is full of vitamins!
Then you wait. And wait. And wait. I let mine drain about 18 hours. Here is what it looked like when I deemed it done!
Dump in in a bowl, and you are done! (I love the “marks” on the cheese from the cheesecloth!)
Note: I reuse my cheesecloth. After I’m done using it, I rinse it out, and place it in boiling water on the stove with washing soda. I let it boil out for 45 minutes, rinse it, and hang it to dry. You can buy disposable cheesecloth from cheesemaking.com, but I choose to reuse mine.
Also, you can keep the diluted rennet, and use to make more lactic cheese. Store in the fridge in a covered container for 1-2 weeks.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have some bread in the oven with some lactic cheese in it, and am going to make some lasagna and use lots of lactic cheese in it!
Would you ever try making cheese? Try it! You will love it!