Last updated on December 2nd, 2011
MMMMM…take a bite of homemade cottage cheese, and you’ll think you’re eating a cloud. It’s light. It’s fluffy. It’s the kind of thing I like to fold into pancake batter for breakfast, or to serve with blueberries for dessert. You won’t believe how easy it is to make this ambrosia, or how self-reliant you’ll feel after you’ve made it:
Now, before I get to the recipe, let me explain that this version of cottage cheese is nothing like the heavy, watery, tartly-acidic cottage cheese that American supermarkets sell. In fact, according to food-writer David Lebovitz, it’s the equivalent of the cottage cheese that Parisian shops offer. David lives in Paris, so I’ll take him at his word.
Homemade Cottage Cheese
Based on a recipe by David Lebovitz
Ingredients for about 2 cups (Want more? Double or even quadruple the ingredients)
1 quart whole milk
4 drops organic vegetable rennet*
1/2 tsp salt
6 Tbsp heavy cream
Special equipment – a non-reactive, heavy bottomed pot with a lid (I used my 2-quart Le Creuset pot); a thermometer; a piece of butter-muslin* or cheese-cloth for draining the curds; a slotted spoon; a tea towel
*You can buy, as I did, both the liquid rennet and the butter-muslim here. Neither item is expensive.
After 4 hours the mixture will resemble a soft custard. Using a knife, cut the mixture criss-cross into one-inch squares.
Line a colander with the butter-muslin or cheese-cloth, then set the colander into a large bowl. Pour in the curds, and gently stir to help drain the whey. Empty the bowl once or twice so the curds are not sitting in the drained whey.
Fold the butter-muslin over the cheese, and set the colander (still in the bowl) in the refrigerator. Let chill for an hour or more, stirring once or twice to encourage further draining.
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