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Homesteading: Making Chevre

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Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 21, 2009
3:42 PM

Post #6299237

This is the first time I've tried to make chevre, or a cultured goat cheese beyond yogurt cheese. I'm using the milk that I picked up yesterday, fresh from the faucet as it were. =0)

This first pic shows some of the equipment needed. A gallon of milk, a thermometer, the chevre culture, and two stainless steel pots that fit one inside the other. I picked a set of 3 of these up at a local big box store for $30 and they work perfect.

The milk goes in the little pot, the little pot goes in the big pot, and water goes into the big pot to the level of the milk. In other words, you're making a double boiler to gently raise and hold the heat of the milk.

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Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 21, 2009
3:50 PM

Post #6299299

Onto the stove it goes, put the thermometer in, turn on the flame and bring the milk to 145*. I've found with this particular set-up, I need to turn the flame off around 140* and the temp will continue to rise to the required 145*. As the milk heats up, stir it ocassionally to mix the temp layers that otherwise form in the milk. Stainless steel spoons are best as they will confer no off flavors to the milk. I found mine at a garage sale for $2. =0)

Once the temp is up to 145*, it needs to be held between 145* and 150* for 30 min. This pasteurizes the milk and kills any pathogens or competing bacteria that might ruin the cheese. I've found with my set-up the temp will stay up for about 20 min. before I have to bump it a bit with the flame.

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Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 21, 2009
3:56 PM

Post #6299364

After 30 min. cool the milk rapidly by setting it in a sink of cold water and ice. If you're going to just drink the milk, you can take it all the way down to 40* and put in the fridge. This milk is safe for infants, elderly, and immuno-compromised individuals.

If, as today, you are making chevre, you cool the milk to 86* and stir in the chevre culture, a tiny little packet that sure doesn't look like it could make cheese out of a whole gallon of milk. =0)

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Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 21, 2009
4:00 PM

Post #6299439

Once the culture is added, you put the lid on your pot and place it somewhere where it will stay at 72* for 12 hours. We looked around the house and the closest we got was up on top of the pantry shelves. It was about 70* and we're hoping that's close enough. It's going to be a warm day, so it'll probably warm up a bit up there. Tonight we'll see if we have curds...

Ya'll are seeing way more of my kitchen than most of my friends... LOL

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Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 21, 2009
4:27 PM

Post #6299552

An important note... when pasteurizing and making cheeses, you'll need a thermometer that can be calibrated for accuracy. They generally have a small nut on the backside of the dial so you can use a wrench to adjust them.

To calibrate, put the sensing end in a glass of ice water... mostly ice, just enough water to fill the spaces. After everything's had a few minutes to chill, your thermometer should read 32*. If it doesn't, take a small wrench and tweak the nut, holding the dial, til it does.

The first time I tried to pasteurize my milk, I hadn't done this and the dang milk was boiling and supposedly it hadn't reached the high temp I wanted (there's a high temp version of pasteurizing, where you keep the temp up for something like 15 sec. but it doesn't yield as desirable a curd for cheese making). Soooo, that's how I found out about calibrating thermometers. LOL

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Hineni
Paris, TN
(Zone 6b)

March 21, 2009
4:47 PM

Post #6299624

Great info, thanks Jay!
AZgrammie
North of Heber, AZ
(Zone 6b)

March 21, 2009
6:50 PM

Post #6300033

Yeah, great pix too. Hope it turns out perfectly.
AZgrammie
North of Heber, AZ
(Zone 6b)

March 21, 2009
7:02 PM

Post #6300072

I bought those stainless steel pots, too, but then I set them aside with the receipt because I thoguht they were not really stainless steel, because my magnet wouldn't stick to them. But my-son-the-chef came over and laughed, said stainless steel is not magnetic. So I kept them and have used the smallest one for cheese making, but never thought to use to of them as a double boiler. Duh! Thanks, Jay.
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 21, 2009
10:35 PM

Post #6300748

Those pots are about as thin and cheap as you could make 'em, but they work great for this. LOL They'd make great milking buckets, too, I think. And a whole lot cheaper than the stainless steel pails in the livestock catalogues. =0)
CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

March 21, 2009
11:04 PM

Post #6300899

Where do you buy the culture?
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 21, 2009
11:15 PM

Post #6300948

I got the goat cheese kit from New England Cheesemaking Supply. It comes with Chevre and Fresh cultures, muslin for straining, cheese molds, and instruction booklet.

www.cheesemaking.com
CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

March 21, 2009
11:24 PM

Post #6301002

What exactly is rennet? I remember in the Little House books they had to kill a young milkfed calf to get the rennet. They used part of the calf's stomach and boiled it in the milk.
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 22, 2009
1:29 AM

Post #6301505

Rennet is an enzyme that coagulates the milk, helping to form a firmer curd. It's especially helpful with goat milk. If you're having trouble getting your goat milk yogurt to firm up, it needs a tiny touch of very dilute rennet.

There's both animal rennet, from calf or lamb stomachs, and vegetable rennet. Now they have a bacteria line that produces rennet as well.

The chevre culture in the goat cheese kit also has rennet in it, from a vegetable source. =0)
CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

March 22, 2009
1:36 AM

Post #6301534

I looked at the link you posted and clicked through to where she shows how to make the mozerella (sp?). I would never have imagined it was so easy. Makes me want to send for the kit.
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 22, 2009
1:39 AM

Post #6301555

It makes great mozarella... another friend makes it all the time for her family. =0)
CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

March 22, 2009
1:59 AM

Post #6301632

I have added the site to my favorites. I may actually try it one day. I would love to have a milk cow. Just a small breed, maybe a Dexter or a Scottish cow, that only gives a couple gallons a day.
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 22, 2009
2:19 AM

Post #6301708

I wish they made a cow that gave as much as a goat... LOL
CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

March 22, 2009
2:24 AM

Post #6301723

I wish goat's milk tatsed like cow's milk. I'd buy a goat.
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 22, 2009
4:07 AM

Post #6302156

Fresh goats milk does taste like cow's milk. =0) It's only if there's a buck around or the milk is a few days old or hasn't been handled properly (cooled quickly) that it gets goaty.

I sure wish I could give you a glass of what I've got now, you'd be out the door lookin' for a milk doe faster than I don't know what. =0)
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 22, 2009
4:44 AM

Post #6302288

I checked the culture and HOUSTON, WE HAVE CHEESE!!! =0) Well, almost.

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Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 22, 2009
4:47 AM

Post #6302297

To REALLY have cheese, the whey needs to be separated from the curd...
the colander in the sink is lined with cheese muslin and sitting in a bowl to collect the whey.

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Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 22, 2009
4:51 AM

Post #6302307

After the curds are spooned into the muslin it is gathered up, tied with a string and left to drain overnight...

Yes, that's the dog's bowl collecting the whey overnight. They love it with their breakfast and we got plenty for ourselves. Whey is also good to soak chicken feed in...

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Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 22, 2009
4:54 AM

Post #6302313

Here's our whey! As you can see, there's more than half a gallon. We make a to die for bread with it. Definitely looking forward to that!

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Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 22, 2009
12:55 PM

Post #6302836

Well, I'd like to say I bounced out of bed bright and early to check the cheese, but we're plumb wore out from yesterday's nice weather and everything we got done... no early, no bounce. Bright's always in question. =0)

But I have taken the draining cheese down and Tah-Dah... cheese, wonderful cheese! A big ol' hunk of it, too. =0) It tastes great, and has a slightly grainy appearance, though the texture in the mouth is smooth. I can't wait to have it on this morning's toast with chokecherry jelly! Oh yum...

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CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

March 22, 2009
1:53 PM

Post #6303003

So, is it like cream cheese?
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 22, 2009
1:56 PM

Post #6303013

About the same consistency, but instead of looking smooth when you cut it, it looks more like... cheese cake. =0)
AZgrammie
North of Heber, AZ
(Zone 6b)

March 22, 2009
4:46 PM

Post #6303565

Sounds delicious -- but, how do you pronounce chevre, anyway? NE Cheesemaking Supply is where I got my mozzarella kit from, the one I haven't used yet. The postage really bothered me, I need to find a cheesemaking supplier on the West Coast, closer to home.

Re rennet, don't bother asking for it at your local grocery. All I got when I tried that were blank stares, LOL. I can remember seeing rennet on grocery store shelves. Doesn't seem that long ago, either.
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 22, 2009
5:24 PM

Post #6303736

Yeah, sometimes you can find rennet at the store under the name Junket (I think) but the folks in the know say it's not that good. Of course, my old lady neighbors swear by it...

Some of the goat supply sources have cheese making stuff; they might be closer to you.

Pronunciation... CHEV-rah (I think) lol
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 22, 2009
10:45 PM

Post #6305112

MMmmm, favorite new afternoon snack... crackers, chevre, Imperial Lime soda. MMMmmmm. =0d

Glenda_Michigan
Fowlerville, MI
(Zone 5b)

March 22, 2009
11:35 PM

Post #6305308

Wow, what a great lesson!! Step by step - and with pictures too! ...You should teach random classes on here!! You're awesome at this! And now I know how to pasteurize fresh milk too! I've saving that info! In my 'self-sufficient library' I have a three ring binder for tidbits like this that I print and put in it. :-D
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 22, 2009
11:40 PM

Post #6305332

I've got a spiral notebook that I do the same thing in! All sorts of stray info in it, some I'll never use, some I use over and over. It's great. =0)

Glad you found this helpful and interesting. Thanks.
Jay
who for dessert tonight might try chevre with canned peaches...
CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

March 23, 2009
1:13 AM

Post #6305777

Be careful. You may become a chevre-a-holic. And that would require more frequent tripping through the goat lot in your clogs.
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 23, 2009
1:47 AM

Post #6305958

Next time I will go armored with my muck boots...
Next time is tomorrow. =0)

Hi, my name is Jay and I'm a chevre-holic!
CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

March 23, 2009
1:57 AM

Post #6306022

Oh No!!! I'm too late. I'll have to set up an intervention!
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 23, 2009
1:24 PM

Post #6307397

Oh sure, call it what you want, but you're not getting my cheese! You'll just have to make your own...

=0) Your name is Cajun, and you're about to become a mozzarellaholic.
LOL
CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

March 23, 2009
6:11 PM

Post #6308654

Not while I'm dieting!

taynors

taynors
Urbana, OH
(Zone 5b)

March 23, 2009
6:50 PM

Post #6308816

I hungry for cheese !
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 23, 2009
7:13 PM

Post #6308907

Skim milk mozzarellaaaaaaaa...
BwaaaHaaaHaaa

taynors

taynors
Urbana, OH
(Zone 5b)

March 23, 2009
11:17 PM

Post #6309919

I got fat free mozzerella at the store , cuz i m dieting :( sad but true. in the summer i won't be so strict and allow myself cheese with full fat !!!
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 23, 2009
11:24 PM

Post #6309951

Just weed harder! LOL

taynors

taynors
Urbana, OH
(Zone 5b)

March 23, 2009
11:29 PM

Post #6309967

LOL no weeds yet but i got wood to burn and move and a chicken coop to build would that help ? :)
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 23, 2009
11:43 PM

Post #6310024

Anything you do vigorously will help. I think of it like feeding a horse. I was raised not to grain my horse until after I'd worked him. No work, no grain.

So on the days when I sit around and do little, I try not to indulge. On the days when I work like a madwoman, I eat anything I want.

At least, that's the theory... LOL

I took half the chevre down to S. at the feed store to express my appreciation for letting me have freight delivered there. BIG hit. S was already talking about 3 different things she wants to do with it. And gave it high marks for color, texture and smell... she's quite the gourmand, is S. =0) She said she could feel crackers in her future.

Crackers... gotta go!

taynors

taynors
Urbana, OH
(Zone 5b)

March 24, 2009
11:18 PM

Post #6314689

yummm crachers mmmm

darius

darius
So.App.Mtns.
United States
(Zone 5b)

March 24, 2009
11:35 PM

Post #6314779

Did I say somewhere up above that I make a merlot jelly that's devine with chevre atop crackers...
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 25, 2009
3:17 PM

Post #6317280

OMG... I'm in a swoon, Darius! And it's still morning, hardly the time for merlot. LOL

How does one make a wine jelly? Actually, if you care to share, maybe a jelly thread would be a good idea?

Making another batch of chevre soon..

darius

darius
So.App.Mtns.
United States
(Zone 5b)

March 25, 2009
6:56 PM

Post #6318330

Yeah, maybe a thread for wine jellies... all the alcohol boils off, of course. I made a merlot, and another that was a dry white wine. The merlot was better.

darius

darius
So.App.Mtns.
United States
(Zone 5b)

March 25, 2009
7:04 PM

Post #6318367

Here's the wine jelly recipe link:
http://davesgarden.com/community/forums/t/967277/

taynors

taynors
Urbana, OH
(Zone 5b)

March 25, 2009
9:36 PM

Post #6319153

oh darius !!! your so bad. :P I like it.
jayryunen we are sooooo in trouble. I swoon to with you
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 26, 2009
3:03 PM

Post #6322264

OOOOoooooOOOOO... swooning back. ;-)

Ah, the timer just went off for my next batch of chevre, must go mix in the culture. Tah, loveys...
CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

March 27, 2009
1:09 PM

Post #6326394

Waht is all that stuff? A secret cheese code!
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 27, 2009
1:30 PM

Post #6326483

Gonna report it to the admin...

the chevre is lovely again; this is just the easiest stuff in the world to make. The tough part is finding someone to get the milk from. =0)

CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

March 27, 2009
1:39 PM

Post #6326512

Looks like it disappeared.
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 27, 2009
2:08 PM

Post #6326652

Big thanks to Admin for removing rude, stupid spamming soooo quickly! =0)
CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

March 27, 2009
11:20 PM

Post #6328961

Is this a forum that can be accessed by nonsubscribers?

darius

darius
So.App.Mtns.
United States
(Zone 5b)

March 27, 2009
11:36 PM

Post #6329006

Yes. Here's a list of all forums: http://davesgarden.com/community/forums/
the ones with an asterisk * are subscriber-only.
CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

March 28, 2009
12:05 AM

Post #6329099

I was only a nonsubscriber for about a week after I found DG. I couldn't get enough! I have learned so much about so many different things on here. With all the subscribers from so many different backgrounds, this place has a wealth of knowledge on nearly anything you need. And lots of great company to boot. LOL
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 28, 2009
1:12 AM

Post #6329353

Me too! All the stuff I really wanted to talk about and ask questions about were subscriber and it's way cheaper than a mag and more fun 'cause of the great folks. Meaning you guys!

I luv ya, man...
LOL
Jay
CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

March 28, 2009
2:05 AM

Post #6329619

Back atcha! LOL There really are the nicest, kindest and most generous group of folks here on DG. It's where I come to get away from the meaness of the world and renew my faith in people.

taynors

taynors
Urbana, OH
(Zone 5b)

March 29, 2009
11:54 PM

Post #6337499

its an addiction !!! can't get enough DG !!
your right Cajun it does renew your faith in people again. I felt the same way :)
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 29, 2009
11:56 PM

Post #6337515

{{{grumble}}}
You were supposed to give me yer beer...
{{slump}}

taynors

taynors
Urbana, OH
(Zone 5b)

March 30, 2009
12:44 AM

Post #6337777

beer ?
where is the beer ?
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

March 30, 2009
12:48 AM

Post #6337805

Apparently there ain't none. We need a homebrewer on this here forum... a few yeastie beasties run amock...

For medicinal needs, of course.

=0)

taynors

taynors
Urbana, OH
(Zone 5b)

March 30, 2009
12:49 AM

Post #6337810

LOL
yeastie beasties LOL to funny
oh yes medicinal only :)
beadmom
Bend, OR
(Zone 5a)

April 7, 2009
11:20 PM

Post #6379492

If you are just making chevre you can use a couple of tablespoons of vinegar (I've used balsamic before to have some fun) or lemon juice instead of rennet.

Here's a recipe with lemon juice. It says it doesn't work with pasteurized milk but it always worked fine for me and we pasteurized everything we entered into the fair.

Also... Knapweed makes a suitable vegetable rennet. Who knew it was actually good for something...

I also made a chevre once with honey and cranberries and it won at the fair!



Ginger

taynors

taynors
Urbana, OH
(Zone 5b)

April 8, 2009
12:45 PM

Post #6381475

Ginger those sound wonderful !
LOL great news on the Knapweed , always good to hear a weed is good for something . :)
could one use dandylions ?
beadmom
Bend, OR
(Zone 5a)

April 8, 2009
3:20 PM

Post #6382041

Guess it would have helped to put the link in for the recipe...

http://www.utterlydivine.com/Recipes.htm

Ginger
CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

April 8, 2009
4:55 PM

Post #6382408

I was wondering if I had missed something. Turns out, something was missing. LOL
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

April 13, 2009
5:39 PM

Post #6404264

Chevre is made with a chevre culture. What you're making with vinegar is queso blanco made with goat milk. If you use lemon juice, it's called panir. Just because it's made with goat milk doesn't make it chevre, though it's still great cheese. =0) And simple!

The reason some recipes say not to use pastuerized milk is the store pastuerized milk often doesn't make good cheese, because it's been super heated in a process known as ultra-pasteurization (UP). That's why milk keeps for a month now if it's refrigerated. Sometimes milk from a regional dairy is not UP, but you can usually tell from the use by date... if it's weeks away, it's UP. If it's next week, it's not.

Home pasteurized milk is not a problem for cheese making. In fact, most of the recipes I have start with pastuerized milk, because that way the cheese culture has no competition with other bacteria that is present in raw milk and you'll get a more consistent product.
CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

April 13, 2009
5:47 PM

Post #6404316

Ginger,
Does that recipe make cheese the consistency of cream cheese or riccota cheese? That seems so easy even I might be able to accomplish it.
beadmom
Bend, OR
(Zone 5a)

April 13, 2009
5:54 PM

Post #6404348

It is a riccota style and really so very easy...

Ginger
CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

April 14, 2009
1:09 AM

Post #6406163

Is chevre like ricotta or cream cheese?
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

April 14, 2009
1:22 PM

Post #6408037

It's more like ricotta; it depends on how long you let it drain. Adding a bit of milk or cream after draining can give it a substance more like neufchatel... low fat cream cheese.

I find the vinegar and lemon curdled cheeses to have a firmer, grainier texture than ricotta. They also don't melt well... the panir is what is in the east Indian dish Palaak Panir... cubes of cheese in creamed spinach that don't melt when you heat the dish. Very tasty. =0)

The vinegar and lemon curdled cheeses are very easy and where I started. Then chevre is often the next step in difficulty. Then there's a world of soft cheeses and the "college-level" hard cheeses... I don't ever 'spect to get that educated. LOL

taynors

taynors
Urbana, OH
(Zone 5b)

April 14, 2009
1:35 PM

Post #6408085

mmm cheese
CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

April 14, 2009
1:38 PM

Post #6408100

I am really thinking of cheese making. I may have to get me a goat. One of those little pygmy goats.

taynors

taynors
Urbana, OH
(Zone 5b)

April 14, 2009
4:50 PM

Post #6408985

I want to make yogurt !! mmmm with homemade strawberry jam on top or black raspberry's mmmm
CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

April 14, 2009
4:55 PM

Post #6409002

How do you make yogurt? I love the stuff but have never had home made.

taynors

taynors
Urbana, OH
(Zone 5b)

April 14, 2009
9:02 PM

Post #6410170

I have no idea LOL but i know you get one of them yogurt machines makers . Several Dgers i have talked with make it with goat milk :)
other than that i have no idea on the actual process LOL :)
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

April 14, 2009
9:08 PM

Post #6410199

Yogurt is maybe even easier than vinegar cheese! And if you drain it, then you've got yogurt cheese... another yummy!

You'll need to start with a kind of store yogurt you like... not non-fat, because the pectin or gelatine or carageenan they put in it interferes with culturing it. Check the label of low fat yogurts, too.

You heat the milk to 180*, let it cool, and add a generous tablespoon full of your store yogurt, stirring it into the cooled milk well. Keep the milk warm (somewhere near 116*) for ~ 6hrs... a oven with a pilot light, an igloo filled with warm water, we use our dehydrator... until the mixture thickens to be like thick cream. Put it in the fridge and it sets up more.

I used to mix it up right before bed and put it in my warm oven overnight and by morning I had fresh yogurt.

With goat milk, a tiny bit of rennet (use one TBL of the following dilution: 1 drop rennet to 4 TBL cool, unchlorinated water) is used to help get a good set, otherwise it's runny, more like kefir. Or you can use pectin, gelatin, or dry milk (1/4 C per qt. milk).

I used to make yogurt with store-bought cow milk all the time, using the dry milk as a thickener and non-fat milk, but I haven't tried it since they started ultrapasteurizing milk, so I don't know if it makes a difference with the final product.

Just a heads up... the 'cheese cloth' they sell in the supermarket doesn't work very well for curd draining... a piece of lightweight muslin will do much better. =0)
beadmom
Bend, OR
(Zone 5a)

April 14, 2009
9:11 PM

Post #6410214

http://www.cheesemaking.com/store/pg/6-Recipes.html

THis is my favorite cheesemaking supply place. They also have a lot of cheese recipes. The yogurt recipe doesn't make sense to me but maybe it will to you!


Ginger

taynors

taynors
Urbana, OH
(Zone 5b)

April 14, 2009
11:08 PM

Post #6410762

good to know Jay :)
beadmom
Bend, OR
(Zone 5a)

April 14, 2009
11:59 PM

Post #6410979

Jay is so right on the cheescloth thing. I buy a bunch from New England Cheesmaking and then I wash it in the dishwasher and reuse...


Ginger
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

April 15, 2009
12:24 AM

Post #6411086

Dishwasher... great idea!

I don't have one of those, so I rinse thoroughly and boil the cloth. =0)

Once you've made your yogurt, then you can just use a bit of it for your next batch... sort of like sourdough starter, only different. LOL But that's another story.

darius

darius
So.App.Mtns.
United States
(Zone 5b)

April 15, 2009
12:26 AM

Post #6411100

I don't add dry powdered milk anymore... for all I know it is dried milk from China. I DO make my yogurt with whole milk; after it has cooled and the culture added, I put it in half pint canning jars and use my Excalibur dehydrator to warm it enough to set. Then screw the tops on tight, cool to room temp. and refrigerate.

That way I have individual servings ready to grab, and the Excalibur does a good job of keeping the temp. steady while I'm making it. (While the heated milk is cooling down, I test the dehydrator with a thermometer to see what setting keeps the temp. I want.)

One word of caution: I like the taste of Greek and Bulgarian yogurts, but they don't work for me as a starter culture. Not sure why.

I use "butter muslin" (from New England Cheesemaking Supply) to drain everything, even berries when I'm making jelly. Wash in hot soapy water, rinse with a tsp. of vinegar in the water, and dry for re-use. The fruits stain the muslin so those pieces only get used for fruits.
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

April 15, 2009
12:33 AM

Post #6411144

Interesting... we've used oikos yogurt with no problem. Are you using ultrapasteurized milk? We haven't been and I'm wondering if that's the difference.

darius

darius
So.App.Mtns.
United States
(Zone 5b)

April 15, 2009
1:03 AM

Post #6411296

Not UP milk that I know of... but it's been over a year since I made it. I'd love to find raw milk...

taynors

taynors
Urbana, OH
(Zone 5b)

April 15, 2009
3:54 PM

Post #6413838

tougher and tougher to find unless you got your own milking animal. I m still trying to find a shareherd around my area. nothing yet they are all in the amish country side which is to far for me. :( some day :)
beadmom
Bend, OR
(Zone 5a)

April 15, 2009
6:19 PM

Post #6414554

Call your local 4H extension office and see if there are kids with goats/cows/sheep that are milking. There should be... It's baby season. You can buy private from them. If you were in Oregon I could get you all the milk you wanted!



Ginger

darius

darius
So.App.Mtns.
United States
(Zone 5b)

April 15, 2009
7:37 PM

Post #6414875

That's a great idea, Thanks.
beadmom
Bend, OR
(Zone 5a)

April 15, 2009
8:34 PM

Post #6415116

This thread was very helpful to me. I love Fromage Blanc and I had not found a recipe for it here in the US that was accurate until I went scoping out somthing for this thread and found that one on New England Cheesemaking.

I am excited. I am going to make it soon!!!!


Ginger
CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

April 15, 2009
8:45 PM

Post #6415184

This may sound strange but do you think I could make the yougurt in my incubator?

taynors

taynors
Urbana, OH
(Zone 5b)

April 16, 2009
12:36 AM

Post #6416211

Hmmm good question Cajun.
Ginger sounds like your on the road to cheese making :) good idea on the 4H . Never thought of that .

Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

April 16, 2009
6:42 PM

Post #6419364

Cajun...
I'll bet you could use your incubator. Folks use all sorts of set-ups... yogurt's not fussy like cultured cheeses. I'll bet if you could get the temp anywhere between 100 and 120, you'd be in fine shape.

I think a person could put a cookie cooling rack over a heating pad set on low, put the container of yogurt on the rack and cover the whole deal with a thick towel and it'd work. I've heard of folks using electric blankets, but that's seems kind of overkill for a quart of yogurt. LOL

The warmer the temp, the faster the set. The cooler, the slower. For myself, I've found I prefer cooler, as it's too easy to get tart yogurt with a higher temp and I'm not fond of tart yogurt.

Ginger, I've been curious about the Fromage Blanc... let us know how it goes! Do you have Ricki Carroll's book yet? OMG, to die for!

I already wanted a root cellar, now I'm dreaming of a root cellar/cheese cave combo...

LOL
beadmom
Bend, OR
(Zone 5a)

April 16, 2009
8:06 PM

Post #6419753

LOL...

We have a 14 x 14 x 8 concrete in ground cistern that we do not have water rights to fill anymore...

I have been eyeing a backhoe and a concrete sawing company lately. I want a DOOR...


Ginger
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

April 16, 2009
8:28 PM

Post #6419849

OOOOOooooooo...
=0)

darius

darius
So.App.Mtns.
United States
(Zone 5b)

April 16, 2009
8:59 PM

Post #6420015

The concrete bunker/cistern sounds promising!

I'm fortunate that I have both a spring house and a root cellar. The spring house might be perfect to grow mushrooms, but as it's not insulated, cannot be used for winter food storage or cheese. I thought about the root cellar for cheese, but in reality I need 2 root cellars... one with low humidity, and one with high humidity for storing different foods. It's not large enough to divide.

If we get a backhoe in here in a year or two to dig out a spot to extend the tiny back bedroom (when the kid's boyfriend moves up here), maybe I can afford to have an additional spot dug to extend the root cellar. Dreams are cheap.

taynors

taynors
Urbana, OH
(Zone 5b)

April 16, 2009
9:24 PM

Post #6420122

ooooohhh aaaahhhh that would be cool :)

taynors

taynors
Urbana, OH
(Zone 5b)

April 16, 2009
9:25 PM

Post #6420125

lets hope her boyfriend can dig holes :)
CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

April 17, 2009
2:08 AM

Post #6421452

Can an excavator fit across your bridge or will it have to come through the creek? We have a root cellar at the barn but it needs a new roof. It doesn't have any shelves in it. What kind of shelves should I think about? The building is about 8x10 or 12. The roof is about 7 ft tall or so.

This message was edited Apr 16, 2009 10:10 PM

Thumbnail by CajuninKy
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Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

April 17, 2009
1:13 PM

Post #6423132

Neat! Do you have any idea how old it is? I love the old stone buildings. =0)

For shelves... mostly it seems folks use what they can get. How humid is it in there? Looks like you've already got some ventilation.

taynors

taynors
Urbana, OH
(Zone 5b)

April 17, 2009
1:15 PM

Post #6423141

here are some links i found for you
hope it helps
http://www.motherearthnews.com/Modern-Homesteading/1980-07-01/Root-Cellars.aspx
http://www.motherearthnews.com/Real-Food/1991-08-01/Root-Cellaring.aspx
sue
CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

April 17, 2009
1:18 PM

Post #6423148

Can't really tell on the humidity with the roof leaking the way it does. As to it's age, I think it is pretty old. There was an old homeplace where the barn sits now and the root cellar was part of the old homeplace. It would need a new roof, a good door and some screen over the vents to keep "visitors" away. I have thought of using it as a chicken house but that seems to be a waste of a good root cellar. It's always cool in there.
CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

April 17, 2009
1:26 PM

Post #6423179

Thanks for the links. I'll check them out.
Jayryunen
Sapello, NM
(Zone 5b)

April 17, 2009
1:30 PM

Post #6423197

Well, you know we all have serious cellar envy, so don't even begin to think about making that a chicken coop. =0)


I know if I had such a fine old stone building, I'd be looking to put a new roof and door on it. Between produce storage, mushroom growing and future cheese cave, I'd be in an absolute dither about its potential!

I just finished reading about how ol' Charley (remember him? The old guy with the wagon bows ripped off?) hand dug a 12 x 14 foot root cellar on his new homestead to store his potatoes and onions in. Sounds like it took him about a week... it'd sure take me a might longer! LOL

darius

darius
So.App.Mtns.
United States
(Zone 5b)

April 17, 2009
1:42 PM

Post #6423234

What a lovely old building, lots of potential!

Shelves should withstand humidity. The ones in mine are wonky but they have been there for ages; they're probably wormy chestnut. They only go from the middle up, and my building is short like yours. My guess is that they had slatted wooden bins below to store potatoes, onions, etc. I put a bale of straw in mine 3 years ago and cover my shelves with it and bury potatoes, winter squash or whatever in the straw. I lost a few sweet potatoes one year... the veggies were touching the block walls, so now I make sure they are well buried in straw against the outside wall.

The extra space below the shelves gives me a place to drag in tender plants in pots for winter, things like my figs.

I have 3 books I bought used (and cheap) on half.com; all have some interesting tips and information. They are Root Cellaring, Putting Food By, and Stocking Up.

Here's a couple of photos

Thumbnail by darius
Click the image for an enlarged view.

darius

darius
So.App.Mtns.
United States
(Zone 5b)

April 17, 2009
1:45 PM

Post #6423240

I have a window in mine, but single pane so it gets covered inside for insulation, and anyway veggies need to be stored in the dark or they will soon sprout...

Thumbnail by darius
Click the image for an enlarged view.

taynors

taynors
Urbana, OH
(Zone 5b)

April 19, 2009
12:09 AM

Post #6429701

ooohhh aaaaahhhh that is slick looking darius. Very envyous of the two of you.
i will look into those books you got . they sound interesting. :)
CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

April 19, 2009
1:37 AM

Post #6430084

Got the new Countryside magazine today. It has something in it about root cellars but I haven't read it yet. I've been busy with the new foal and I went carting this afternoon. Then a young friend and I braided Max's mane and tail. Hez da bomb!!

Thumbnail by CajuninKy
Click the image for an enlarged view.

taynors

taynors
Urbana, OH
(Zone 5b)

April 19, 2009
2:10 PM

Post #6431788

oh i love Countrside !
yes he is very handsome ! oh so cute.
CajuninKy
Biggs, KY
(Zone 6a)

May 28, 2009
2:36 AM

Post #6607373

Jay
Have you made any more cheese lately? You have been awful quiet.

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