Monday, March 26, 2012

UFH March Challenge :: Cheese Making

I did it!!
I made cheese. 

This month, the Urban Farm Handbook Challenge helped participants learn to preserve milk in different ways.  One of the reasons that i was so excited about this is that i have really be analyzing how we could stop the plastic from coming into our home.  Things like cottage cheese and yogurt are the biggest culprits.

One of the tutorials that Annette referred us to was perfect!
Andrew Wilder's blog, Eating Rules , had a simple recipe for a cheese that reminds me of the cojita cheese you find in the Mexican restaurants.

SO into the kitchen with the trusty laptop we went.

A half gallon of whole milk and some lemons later....
we had cheese curds!

My whey never really became a clear liquid, and i was too afraid to add more lemon juice,
because i wanted Cookie to eat it. :)

 While the curds drained,

I took a walk out into the yard to see what i could find.  Lo!  And behold, the chives are sprouting!

Snip, Snip Little Chives.  I am going to make you a star
in my homemade cheese!

And because the main goal in making "cheese"was to reduce our plastics, i had stumbled upon an Alton Brown (my favourite food chemist) recipe for homemade cottage cheese and had experimented with that recipe.  It was tasty, however i like Andrew's better because you use lemon juice rather than vinegar and lemon juice gave the cheese a fresher flavour.

To make "cottage cheese", Alton simply added a little cream back into the curbs, once they were dry.

Oh Baby!  Homemade Cottage Cheese with Chives!!
This cheese is a versitile one.  After we made a cottage chese snack with it, we sprinkled the rest of the dry curds on our bean and rice for lunch.
This is the other handy thing about Andrew's recipe.
All these spent lemon halves that you are left with are handy for cleaning the copper pots.
Sprinkle a little salt on the pan and rub the lemon around....

Especially nice if you are one of those people that has a pan rack for storing you pots!
Andrew makes you into a super huge rock star --
You make cheese...your pans sparkle...your friend refer to you as Martha or Helouise...

You may actually feel the need to get a red and white striped tank top, blue bloomers with stars on them, and some rockin' gold go-go boots.

Now, if you'll excuse me, i know i left that invisible rocket ship around here somewhere.... :)

Have you heard about the Urban Farm Handbook Challenges? PNW authours Annette Cottrelle and Joshua McNichols have designed an ingenious series of monthly challenges, related to topics in their awesome book, that draw each of us closer to self-sufficiency. There are varying degrees of participation, yet much to be learned from not only the authours, but the participants as well. If you are interested in learning more about a more sustainable way of life, please visit their website called Sustainable Eats and sign up for the challenge. Or just follow along.


  1. Tis was great cheese to make wasnt it? Love your addition of chives.My whey also didnt become really clear!

  2. Thanks for the link...and I enjoyed your post. Once more I am amazed at your delightful talents!


  3. Hi :) Visiting from the UFHC. Your cheese looks like it turned out great, and I bet it was delicious on beans. I'll definitely be trying that with my next batch of cheese.

  4. Hi I also found your linky from the challenge. I enjoyed following along as you wandered in the garden and then scrubbed the pots. What real life is all about isn't it?


Thanks for taking the time to read my silly lil musings. Hope you have a wonderful day!