Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Making Whey and Yogurt Cheese

I want to share how to make whey.  Well, it's not really made so much as it's separated from yogurt.  

I have tried, without success, to make yogurt at home from raw milk.  It turns out too runny, though, likely because I'm trying to keep the temperature down so as not to reduce the healthful benefits of the raw milk.  I'll keep trying.

In the meantime, for me, the next best thing is Stonyfield yogurt.  It's organic and has beneficial live cultures.

I always purchase whole milk (full fat is much healthier for us than low-fat) and plain.  Sometimes, we like to have it with fresh fruit and a touch of honey or stevia.

Of course, for straining whey, we just want it to remain plain.

See that bowl and mesh strainer?  They're both 50+ years old.  The bowl was a wedding gift to my parents (it's the only survivor of the set) and the strainer belonged to my grandparents. I cherish the old hand-me-down items I have that are rich in pertinent-to-me history and family memories.

So, all you need to do is line a strainer with a basket-style coffee filter or cheese cloth. and place it over a bowl to catch the drips.

If you let it drip for 2 to 4 hours, you'll be left with a thicker yogurt (greek yogurt). But, if you let it drip 8 or more hours, it'll be spreadable-cheese consistency.  That's what I usually like to achieve.

Add a bit of salt, to taste, and it is magnificent used as a cream cheese.  I love it on bagels with a slice of tomato.

You can also flavor it with herbs, garlic and diced veggies for a savory veggie dip, or add diced fruit for a sweet spread on toast.  The possibilities are only limited by your imagination!

Then… with that beautiful whey - use it in your ferments like you would a starter culture.  It'll kick up the beneficial bacteria by lots!

Add it to smoothies, use it to soak your oats instead of apple cider vinegar.  I even add a tablespoon or two to my mashed potatoes.  You can use it anywhere you need to add liquid and don't have a lot of heat.

The cheese will keep for up to a month, and the whey will last for several months.

I only did a few spoonfuls this time, so ended up with about 1/3 cup each of cheese and whey.

Have you ever done this before?  How do you use your yogurt cheese and whey?  Or, if you decide to try it for the first time, what will you do with it?


Monika said...

I make about three quarts of yogurt a week - I make it in a crockpot and it is soooooo easy - I usually let mine drain the whey in the fridge for at least 12 hours - I've even let it drain for a day and it is soo awesome and thick, like fluffy ricotta. Each day I mix some with local honey, cinnamon and ginger to help strengthen the immune system. But I use if for and on almost everything. Great on baked potatoes - as a replacement for sour cream - to make 'instant' ice cream in a blender with frozen fruit... I could go on and on... Thank you for your fabulous posts. Always enjoy each one.

Rosalina Beatriz Diaz said...

Thanks for this simple yet informative article! Can't wait to try this. I already have the yogurt.

Dianna said...

Thank you so much for sharing this with us! I've never done anything like this before, but I will definitely be giving it a try. You've made it sound and look so easy! And what treasures you have in your bowl and strainer. I cherish my things like that, as well.