Homemade Raw Chèvre
For many, many years I have half joked that my lifelong ambition was to be a goat farmer and grow to 300 lbs by subsisting off my own artisan goat cheese. Today I became a few steps closer to making that dream a reality…HA! I made my own raw goat cheese. After a few weeks of my family going through the raw goat’s milk from our herdshare like Grant took Richmond I purchased another share of milk from Willow-Witt Ranch
. Then I went out looking for some do-able small-batch cheese recipes. After scouring the web for recipes and techniques, I settled on a very simple chèvre recipe. And me being me, I had to tweak the recipe a little – because (God forbid) I just can’t follow directions exactly.
I bought my culture, rennet and cheesecloth at our local supply store, Grains, Beans & Things
Here’s the ingredients you need:
1 quart of raw goat’s milk
1/4 cup sterilized water
1 drop of single strength Animal Rennet
1/16 teaspoon Mesophilic Culture
1/4 Sea Salt
Rennet & Culture
Here’s the equipment you need:
2 medium squares of fine cheesecloth
Stainless steel colander
Stainless steel bowl
Large glass bowl
small glass bowl or cup
– You want the colander to be able to be suspended over stainless steel bowl
Firstly, make sure all your equipment is sterilized. Wash it with soap, rinse, pour boiling water over it all and then thoroughly dry it all.
– this includes the cheesecloth.
Pour quart of raw milk into the large glass bowl and sprinkle culture on the top of the milk. Give the culture a few minutes to re-hydrate and then mix gently but thoroughly with a wooden spoon. In the small glass bowl combine sterilized water with one drop of rennet. Add 2 tablespoons of rennet solution to milk mixture, mixing with the wooden spoon.
Cover bowl of milk with a towel and allow to culture at room temperature for 24 hours.
Place colander inside of stainless steel bowl and line with cheesecloth.
Pour cultured milk into cheese cloth – it should be a mixture of curds and whey at this point.
Tie up the ends of the cheesecloth to make a little bag for the cheese. The whey will drain through the cheesecloth and colander and be caught in the bottom of the stainless steel bowl. I slipped the wooden handle of a spatula through the top knot to further suspend the draining cheese.
Draining the cheese
Let drain for 24 hours for moist cheese – longer for dryer cheese. Even though many recipes said to allow the cheese to drain in the kitchen, I – being a paranoid first-time-raw-goat-cheese-maker – let my cheese drain in the ‘fridge.
When the cheese has drained, free it from it’s cheesecloth shroud.
I saved the drained whey in a jar to be used in another project and scraped the new cheese from the cheesecloth into the stainless steel bowl.
Add the sea salt.
Seasoning cheese with sea salt
Mix in the sea salt with a wooden spoon.
Store the finished raw cheese in clean (preferably glass) container.
Delicious Raw Chèvre
This chèvre is seriously good stuff! I am SO excited to try new cultures for different cheese. If I can do this, anyone can do this.