I made cheese today!

August 25, 2014

Thanks to my life, I’m just about always cooking for a party of one. This has made certain substances unsustainable, milk being a prime example. I hadn’t dared to bring home a carton till Joy visited but even then by the time the expiry date came and went, there was still a substantial amount of creamy goodness I had to toss. I felt slightly sad about that plus paiseh my dear landlady had to test smell for me, since I have no idea how milk smells either way. 

I don’t know what brought the idea of cheese into my head, but it did and I’m so glad it did. Credit goes to the excellent tutorial on thekitchn, whose link I have attached. What I liked about it was written in the spirit of things, with specific bits on what to look out for. So instead of an exact temperature, all I did was to “take it off the heat” when the milk looked “foamy and steamy”. The comments below are helpful too!

I didn’t rinse my cheese, didn’t measure the amount of lemon juice and because the lemon ended up not working very well (read: like, barely.), I used my landlady’s white vinegar instead. But even then I am extremely happy with the results. Here’s the process: 


This is the beginning. I’ve emptied my milk (about 1.5 litres or so) onto an enamel i.e. heavy bottomed pot, and the fire is burning mediumly – is there such a word? To the pot’s left is a wooden spoon for the occasional stir to check the milk has not burned at the bottom, my then-unbeknownst to me non-curdling lemons which I had precisely intended to use for curdling, and once bread bag now cheese cloth bag with a strainer and mental pot below the strainer. 



Behold, the wrung cheese. It is full of lemon pulp because, as I have since discovered, lemon juice does not simply and easily run out when one squeezes the lemon like the imaginary commercials in my head. Lemon juice is a battle to be fought with the selfish lemon who will not surrender its lifejuice and has to be struggled valiantly with before clumping off into pulp. And also I accidentally dropped the lemon into the pot. Did I mention it didn’t curdle my milk anyway? Used 3 tablespoons of white vinegar then let the stuff stand for 10 minutes.


This be the previous step, the separation of the curds from the whey. As an aside, was this the stuff the nursery rhymes spoke of? 






Tadahh. The cheese, after being set and refridgerated for an unknown amount of time; possibly under an hour. Apparently it needs a heavy weight of top of it while setting in its cheesecloth bag so I dumped my glass bottle of condensed milk atop and checked it off the list. I think it looked beautiful enough. Now I can kind of understand why parents are forever taking photos of their kids. (I only took one at each stage.) The lemon pulp did value add in the end; it gave a nice, light lemony taste to the cheese. Also, the texture was pretty dreamy – smooth, firm, and melty all together. You know it’s good stuff when your landlady’s husband is invited to try a piece and ends up munching on a few more. Everyone liked it, yay. 

One more for the road: 




2 Responses to “I made cheese today!”

  1. (: Says:

    WOW. RNG/ ROO !!! WAO. So proudddd of chu!!!

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