Over on my other blog, The Greening of Gavin, I interviewed Lucy House who runs a free range farm in Baralaba, Queensland.
She blogs at Healthy Farming Healthy Food.
During the interview she mentioned that she milks four cows daily, and makes her own cheese once a week. She makes a really tasty cheese loosely based on Chabichou, but without a ripening period.
Lucy has kindly shared her recipe and method below.
I believe this is actually called Chabichou, which is a fresh cheese. However, I either put it into a brine or I cut it into chunks and marinate it in oil and herbs.
Start this in the morning and it will carry over into the next day.
Lucy’s Feta/ Chabichou
- Milk – I do 4-5 litres and get three cheese baskets, which gives about 250g fresh cheese each.
- Flora Danica (Multiple Strain Mesophilic) starter – use ¼ teaspoon to 20 litres of milk
- Rennet- 1-2 drops single strength rennet to every litre of milk
- Warm milk to 20-30° Celsius (I use it straight from the cow)
- Add starter and let sit for half an hour.
- Add rennet and stir.
- Incubate for 10-16 hours at room temperature. The curd will be very firm and there will be a small amount of whey on the top of the curd.
- Place cheese cloth into hoops/baskets on top of a draining rack. Carefully place “slices” of curd into the baskets until they are full.
- Leave hoops to drain overnight – you will need a large dish to catch all the whey. If there’s too much for the baskets, place into a cheesecloth/bag. This is basically quark.
- The next day, sprinkle 1/8 teaspoon cheese salt on top of each cheese and leave for approximately 2 hours.
- Remove the cheese, turn over and sprinkle more salt on. Leave another 2 hours.
- This can be consumed as a fresh cheese and eaten within 2 weeks or for longer keeping, put into a brine or place in oil with herbs.
Brined cheese – after a week or two, this is a very crumbly style feta.
Marinated cheese – stays very creamy and can be used as a spread or used in salads etc.
By all accounts, everyone at her place loves this cheese. I will have to try it out during my next cheese making session!