I received this excellent letter, and thought I’d share it:
I live in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA. I stumbled across your web site after googling “homemade sour cream.”
I found all of your recipes in the ingredients section to be informative, but was particularly intrigued by the Buttermilk Cottage Cheese recipe.
Last summer I started learning how to make various cheeses at home with the hopes of developing the skill to make some hard cheeses & a good smoked blue cheese. The point is that the moment I saw your incredibly easy method to make a cottage cheese…well…I had to try it.
The resulting cheese was the consistency of a fine grained ricotta. The flavor is smooth & has a mild base….however….the buttermilk tang from the acid translates into a faux goat cheese flavor similar to some chevres & feta’s….but more delicate.
You asked for feedback on what was used and the method:
1. I bought no special milk for this. I used a quart of Kemp’s Buttermilk ($1.39 US). This comes in a waxed carboard carton.
2. I filled my 8 quart stockpot with hot water. Because it is wider than it is tall, I was able to lay the carton on it’s side in the bottom.
3. I turned the burner to medium high & put the cover on it. I allowed the temperature to increase with the intention of producing a gentle boil. However, the steam int he carton caused it to bloat and it started to leak & bubble a bit at the top opening seam.
4. I reduced the heat & held it at just under boiling for 30 minutes, flipping the carton every 10 minutes or so to expose a different side.
5. I turned the heat off and let it sit until the water cooled to room temperature.
6. I transferred the carton to a tray and let it sit on the counter for roughly 24 hours (a bit under).
When I opened the carton up yesterday, I was amazed. As I said, I have been experimenting for nearly a year with various cheeses, mostly soft varieties. The whey that I poured off was as clear as water.
From the 1 quart of buttermilk, I was able to get roughly 2 cups of the ricotta type cheese. My uncle is a Dairy Farmer and I get fresh whole milk from him, which is optimum for making cheese. My thought it that a 50/50 mixture of buttermilk & the whole cow’s milk (which still contains the cream) could be used.
Also…I have my own cryovac system, so my thought is that I might be able to vacuum seal this mixture (possibly even with herbs) and then “boil in the bag”. Any thoughts would be appreciated.
Regardless, I wanted to share my experience and say thank you for the method. I have been meaning to make some homemade ravioli…and this cheese will be the perfect filling.
Thanks, Jeffrey Winkler Minneapolis, MN 55401, USA
Posted by Kurma on 8/5/07; 3:21:07 PM