Seasoned Goat Cheese

Homemade Goat Cheese

I’ve started up a new blog, which I haven’t really finished yet and therefore haven’t officially announced yet called Fictional Food. In it I cook things inspired by books or just post about fictional food I see around the net.

The first thing I decided to tackle involved goat cheese, so I looked up how to make it, expecting to find a bunch of articles describing how horrifyingly hard it is to make goat cheese. Instead I found this recipe on Serious Eats claiming making goat cheese was about as hard as making tea. Usually things touted as this easy are about medium difficulty for me, but while it wasn’t literally as easy as making tea, it was really easy.

Lemons

First up, make lemon juice. I used six small lemons for the required 1/4 cup lemon juice. I strained it to get out the seeds. Next, I heated up the entire quart of goat milk I bought.

Goat Milk

It should be noted that I am a very dedicated food blogger as I had to make four store trips for the necessary items:

  • 1 trip to Foodland to learn they don’t sell goat milk
  • 1 trip to Longs to buy cheesecloth and twine (that I didn’t use)
  • 1 trip to Safeway to buy goat milk, lemons, and a loaf of artisan bread
  • 1 trip to Longs to buy a candy thermometer because I forgot I needed one

I like the thermometer I bought. It has a nifty clip to leave in the pot and you can adjust the thermometer so it doesn’t touch the bottom. While the milk heated, I prepped the cheesecloth, cutting four big rectangles and lining my colander with a bowl underneath.

Curdles

When the milk reached exactly 180 degrees F, I removed it from the stove and stirred in the lemon juice. As described, little curds began to form. I ladled the milk into the cheesecloth.

Draining

I couldn’t get my stupid camera to focus right for this, but you get the idea.

Dripping

I got a big wooden spoon and began tying up each piece of cheesecloth. I tied a total of four knots over the handle and then put it over a pitcher. Serious Eats says a “really deep bowl” but I have no idea where to get a bowl that deep. The pitcher worked great.

Goat Cheese

Eventually, it stopped dripping and I took it out and gently squeezed a bit of leftover whey (the liquid that drains out) out. This is what I had. I began to untie the cloth.

Goat Cheese

This is what it looked like opened up. I plucked out all the pieces of cheese and put them into a bowl.

Soft Goat Cheese

I was shocked! It looked great! Now to add some salt and garlic. I thought half a clove of grated garlic wasn’t much and didn’t feel like wasting half a clove of garlic, but dang it, it was too much and it was really spicy. Oh well. I added minced basil and parsley.

Seasoned Goat Cheese

I ate some for lunch on toasted bread slices and it was nom! (though a bit too garlicky, mah bad) I couldn’t believe I’d made my own cheese! Find out what I did with it to make some Perfectly Prim Goat Cheese.

Goat Cheese

Ingredients:

  • 1 quart goat milk
  • 1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • salt
  • fresh herbs

Tools:

  • fine cheesecloth (about four squares to fit into your colander)
  • wooden spoon
  • bowl
  • colander
  • pitcher
  • candy thermometer
  • stainless steel pot (people say not to use cast iron or aluminum)

Instructions:

  1. Squeeze the lemons to get 1/4 cup juice. Strain out pulp and seeds.
  2. Heat goat milk to 180 degrees F. Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice. Let stand for about a minute until small curds form.
  3. Line colander over a bowl with four layers of cheesecloth. Ladle milk in until all the milk is in.
  4. Pull up sides of cheesecloth and tie over a wooden spoon handle. Tie all layers. Lower into pitcher to drip.
  5. Once done straining, remove from pitcher and gently squeeze out last of the whey. Untie cheesecloth.
  6. Move cheese to a bowl and season to taste with salt, garlic, and herbs.

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