Firstly: Why on earth do we have to make our own cream cheese?
- The quality of the milk – and the life of the cows that made it – is terrible in most commercial offerings – indeed all that i’ve come across in Sydney, OZ. I want conscience free cream cheese if I’m indulging – happy cows, great quality milk.
- If you make your own, you get the WHEY by product. This can be used for adding protein to smoothies, to water for soaking beans and grains, or can be used to make your own fermented foods like pickled onions, cucumbers, kim chi and so on – probiotic power house foods to keep your gut in tip top condition – WIN!
The way to do it!
The better the yoghurt, the better your cream cheese! We love Marook Farm yoghurt – These guys treat their gorgeous cows like royalty – have even been know to play them cool tunes. Love it!
Set a deep bowl up with a strainer going across it. Place a clean tea towel or cheese cloth in the strainer with all the corners hanging out the sides.
Take a 1 litre tub of yoghurt and pour it into the tea towel and then tie the corners of the tea towel across to each other, so that you’ve effectively wrapped the yoghurt and whey is starting to drip through it, through the strainer and into the bottom of the bowl. Once you’ve done this once, it really takes a minute each subsequent time.
Let it drip all night sat on the kitchen bench (well hidden if you have pets!) and in the morning you have two fabulous things: Homemade cream cheese that you can put in a jar or tub and refrigerate for a couple of weeks AND you have whey: How very Miss Muffet of us!
You can mix chopped herbs, sea salt and pepper into your cream cheese, or caramelised onions and garlic, or do a sweet version with honey and vanilla extract– knock yourself out on the creative front!
The first time I spread my very own cream cheese efforts onto toast with delicious Miellerie honey, I was so incredibly chuffed – and I’d hardly done a thing!
I love honouring food preparation and traditional food wisdom – there’s something that feels so right about forgetting this over industrialised past century and rediscovering what really gives us both deliciousness & real nourishment.
Enjoy! And if you’re overseas, share with us your favourite whole milk yoghurt brands so other’s can discover them near where you live.
Real Food. Happy bodies.