Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Dairy Queen

Recently, I was given a rather large amount of cream and as it was close to the 'use by' date decided that it would be best made into fresh cheese, butter and some of this no churn icecream.

The version of cheese that I make is luscious - smooth, extra creamy and not at all difficult to make.

This is how to make a fresh cheese like mine

Line a seive with cheesecloth/muslin or a fresh Chux cloth and stand seive over a basin.

Combine 3 cups of milk and 1 cup of cream. Mix well. Heat this mixture in a saucepan and bring to simmering point or around 180 deg C if you have a thermometer. I heated mine in a large pyrex jug in the microwave.

Add 1 teaspoon salt and 3 tablespoons white vinegar, stir gently and allow the the mixture to curdle. stand for a minute or two.

Spoon gently pour the mixture into the sieve and allow the cheeese to drain.

The cheese will become thicker if allowed to drain for longer. I let mine drain until really thick and then tied it up to form a ball shape.

 Place cheese in a clean container and store in the fridge. It will keep for a few days, unless you are like me and can't resist it.

Fantastic with fresh tomato and basil or try it on toast or crackers with good quality pickles/relish/chutney or with preserves such apricot jam or quince paste.

If you would like to read some more about the  process of making a fresh cheese it is explained here.

Butter is easy to make and something that you may have made inadvertently by over whipping cream, however, my taste buds were wanting cultured butter, which is delicious and worth the extra time and effort.

Read about the process here. When I made the butter I let the cream mixture culture on the bench as directed and then in the fridge for a further twenty four hours.

And how to make butter

The first step is to culture the butter. I used 3 tablespoons plain Greek yoghurt and 600ml cream and then allowed the mixture to culture for 8 hours on the bench and a further 24 hours in the fridge.

Whip cream - use an electric mixer if you have one. t can also be made by shaking in a screw top jar but I am way to lazy for that.

Keep whipping until the cream curdles and the butter fat separates

Strain through a sieve or a sieve lined with cheesecloth/muslin/Chux cloth.

Rinse butter in iced water a couple of times.

If you want salted butter
 Return the butter to a clean dry bowl, add 1/4 teaspoon of salt and mix/massage through the butter, I used my hands and disposable gloves.

 I used 1/2 teaspoon of salt as I like it a bit more salted so does my friend Frank - there was a special batch for him.

 I squeezed mine in a clean cloth to make a big ball of butter.

Package into small containers. I keep one in the pantry so that it is spreadable, one in the fridge and freeze the rest, it is a simple matter to get a new one from the freezer when I put the one from the fridge in the pantry.

I do not cook with this butter and keep it for the table.

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