Goat cheese may not be for everyone. Cheese made from goat’s milk is something most of us don’t prefer since we are used to cheeses made from cow’s milk or sheep’s milk. However, goat cheese is definitely something worth trying. It has a very specific smell and a very rich flavor. That maybe is one reason why goat’s cheese is often expensive than other kinds of cheeses. That said, would you like to know how to make homemade goat cheese?
There are many kinds of goat cheese. If you don’t like the one that doesn’t mean that you won’t like another. On the other hand, some people love all kinds of goat cheese. But the price can sometimes be a problem for them. However, we have a solution that will save you some money. Make goat cheese at home. Yes, you can absolutely do this and it is also not that difficult.
How is goat cheese made?
Before we go to how to make homemade goat cheese, you probably are asking yourself how cheesemakers make goat cheese. Let me outline here the steps.
Choosing the goat’s milk to use:
The first step is obviously getting the needed goat milk. Depending on the cheesemaker, some buy their milk from nearby farms, while others raise goats themselves and get milk from them. The latter is probably the safest option because you always know exactly where the milk came from and what’s in it.
When it comes to pasteurizing the milk, cheesemakers can also choose between two options. One is to pasteurize and one is not to pasteurize it. Pasteurization is the process by which all the bacteria in raw milk is being removed. While cheesemakers pasteurize milk, others don’t. But isn’t this dangerous not to do the process of pasteurization? Yes, it is, not unless they won’t sell the cheese right away. It will need sixty days to sit or age. By doing that, the bacteria that was there will be long gone by then.
Next comes the process of acidification. In order for the lactose to turn into lactic acid, a starter culture needs to be added to the milk. This way, you can adjust the acidity level of the milk. Different cheesemakers from different cultures make cheese differently. Thus, the different kinds of cheeses that we can find in the market. The process of acidification results in the thickening of the milk.
After acidification comes rennet which results in the formation of curds. Cheese can be cut in two ways. If they are softer cheese, they are cut into bigger curds. While the harder ones are cut into smaller ones. Moisture is released by cutting the curds. That’s why harder cheeses are cut into smaller curd as they need to release more moisture in order to harden.
Next comes the salting process and shaping of the cheese to prepare for ripening. Fresh goat cheese needs a few days to a few weeks in order to ripen.
Ingredients for Homemade Goat Cheese:
So that’s how cheesemakers make goat cheese. Now, let’s move to make homemade goat cheese. Starting off with preparing the ingredients :
- Fresh goat’s milk. The best choice would be full-fat.
- Water and citric acid. You can also use vinegar or lemon juice.
- Cheese salt. This kind of salt should not be iodized because iodine can hinder the bacteria in the cheese.
- Dried herbs like rosemary, chives, thyme, etc. are optional.
Instructions to Follow on How to Make Homemade Goat Cheese:
- Dissolve the acid in the water. Set aside.
- Put the milk in a large pan. Add the mixture of water and citric acid. Slowly and carefully heat the mixture.
- When the temperature of your mixture reaches 85ºC or 185ºF, remove the pan from the heat.
- You are making the goat cheese using citric acid. If you want to use vinegar or lemon juice, the instructions are a little different.
- For using vinegar or lemon juice instead of citric acid, start by heating up the milk and only add the vinegar or lemon juice after you turn the heat off.
- The next step is to let the milk curdle. Cover the pan with a lid or a towel and let the milk rest for about ten minutes.
- After 10 minutes, the milk might seem liquid. It is because goat’s milk is different from cow’s milk. They don’t curdle in the same way.
- Pour the mixture into cheesecloth. Hang it from the faucet and let it dry. This way you drain the leftover water.
- After that, mix in the cheese salt and form your cheese.
We hope that these instructions on how to make goat cheese will make you eager to try and do this at home. There may be a lot of things in life that we think is really hard to do. In reality, they are not, and making goat cheese at home is one of those things.
When making a homemade goat’s cheese, you do not need only three ingredients. You also don’t need a lot of time and patience to do this. And that should be okay because you get to eat the fruit of your labor afterward.
As holidays are approaching, take some time to surprise your family members with some homemade goat cheese. It will taste even better knowing that you made it yourself. We hope this article was helpful. If you want another set of recipes to make goat cheese, check out my previous post here.