Monday, April 29, 2013

That Day I Made Cheese

After a long day of driving from Texas, we are home. I love coming home. The Littles had a party at their grandparents but we are glad to hold them again!

Our training was helpful and fun…so much so that if there happens to be a cataclysmic event, you just might want me on your survival team. Unless of course that cataclysmic event involves tight spaces, don’t consider me.

Our Saturday morning started with a milking and then I was off to cheese making class.

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In class we ate our way through the day as we made:

Butter, cultured buttermilk, sour cream, cream cheese, yogurt, labneh, cottage cheese, whey ricotta, milk ricotta, mozzarella, queso sauce, and goat chevre.

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Labneh preserved in oil can last up to six months

I have a secret about cheese making. It’s not that hard. The two biggest factors that are potential difficulties are the exact temperatures required and finding a source of milk (preferably raw, 1-4 days old). Both of these are problematic for me moving to Ethiopia as we will be in the mountains and I don’t know how to adjust temperatures to the altitudes accordingly, and then finding a safe milk supply. Eventually we may be able to have our own cow and then we could verify it’s safety.

Most of these cheeses can be made with store bought milk or cream, but not mozzarella.

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Both of these pictures were taken in the mozzarella process.

If you have access to fresh milk (can use raw or home-pasteurized) definitely something you should could easily do!

I am not a fan of goat milk or goat cheeses but if you are, it can be used. However, goat’s milk is homogenized (meaning cream and milk are mixed and cannot be separated without a mechanical separator).  For many recipes you only need the cream or the milk so this is a problem as goat’s milk won’t coagulate (separate).

I hope to experiment more with this in the coming days. The possibility of cheese in Ethiopia is a very powerful motivator for me!


Matt and Kristi said...

You better be ready to give me a tutorial in a couple of weeks when we see each other!

emilykate said...

I found myself thinking, "I bet this is something she never really expected to do." :)

Maybe this is a dumb question, but are you learning these skills to be able to live/eat in ET or to be able to teach others or for a business venture there?

Christen Leigh said...

Wow cheese making---sounds kinda fun! See you at dinner tonight (I think?!) :)

Jeff said...

I loved reading about your cheese making! Sounds fun. Its exciting thinking of using dairy to build spread the gospel!