Thursday, July 2, 2009

No Whey! Whey and Cream Cheese are easy to make!

Growing up, I remember the nursery rhyme that goes something like this:

Little Miss Muffet sat on a tuffet
Eating her curds and whey.
Then along came a spider
Who sat down beside her
And frightened Miss Muffet away.

I don't know about you, but I sang this rhyme knowing nothing about curds and whey. I have come to love curds through one of my husband's co-worker, Scott. Curds are the byproduct of separating milk.

As a thank you for watching his dog, Sadie, Scott brought curds back from Wisconsin. The curds that are in our fridge, are funny shaped, bite-sized cheese.

If you add vinegar to warm milk, the milk will separate into white clumps (curd) and yellow liquid (whey). From what I understand, by doing this you have made cottage cheese or ricotta cheese.

Several of the recipes that I have given you, have suggested that you use homemade whey.

I am going to show you how to collect your whey from yogurt. Not only will you obtain whey from this process, but you will also have created cream cheese. If you already have yogurt in your refrigerator, then you have been making this natural preservative all along.

You will need a strainer, bowl, cheesecloth or cloth napkin.

1. Place your cheesecloth in the strainer and gently pour yogurt onto the cheesecloth.

2. Place the strainer over a bowl or Mason jar. A yellow liquid will immediately begin dropping through the cheese cloth. This is whey.
3. Leave the yogurt and whey out until the yogurt no longer appears runny. This could be up to 6 hours. Once yogurt appears firm, you can place the strainer (still containing the cheesecloth and yogurt) and bowl into the fridge to further separate.
4. Voila! You have now made cream cheese and whey!


Beth said...

One of my favorite and most emotionally nourishing books--I asked for a copy for my birthday and my parents gave it to me--is Barbara Kingsolver's "Animal, Vegetable, Miracle." It is about eating mindfully, and about eating locally--you know that's becoming a serious movement.

Here's a link to all the recipes in the book--there is a recipe for homemade mozzarella cheese that is to DIE for. Scroll down until you see it.