Feta Cheese

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I begged my husband to buy me a cheese making kit a few weeks ago. He was hesitant at first, but after thinking about it he decided it would be a cool hobby for me. So our kit came in the mail and my husband became more interested than I thought he ever would be. He completely took over my cheese making venture! He has made several cheeses now. I really love that he is so into making cheese! This is a man who gagged at the thought of drinking raw milk. He is now eating raw milk cheese every week! We now own a traditional dutch style cheese press and a mini refrigerator “cave” for aging our cheese.

We have made feta two times, following this recipe. It taste wonderful! It also doesn’t age as long as other feta recipes call for, which I like.

Raw Feta – By Flip & Tiffy

Ingredients

1 Gallon Raw Goat’s Milk
1 packet of Mesophilic Culture
½ Teaspoon Liquid Rennet (with ¼ cup non-chlorinated room-temperature water)
5 tablespoons kosher salt
20 oz. Whey

Directions

Slowly heat milk to 86 degrees, stir gently 5-10 mins to ensure milk is evenly heated.
Remove from heat and add 1 packet of Mesophilic culture, use skimmer and make up and down motions to draw cultures down and evenly (do NOT break surface).
Let stand for five minutes to rehydrate.
Maintaining 86 degrees, let stand and ripen for one hour.
During ripening dilute ½ teaspoon of liquid rennet in ¼ cup non-chlorinated water, stir for 20 seconds.
Once milk is done ripening for one hour, add rennet solution to milk and stir with up and down motion for one minute (do NOT break surface).
Let stand for 30 minutes, keeping 86 degree temperature.

Check for clean break, if necessary let the milk sit for ten more minutes.
If clean curd break occurs, cut curds to ¾ inch cubes and let stand for five minutes to firm up. (Vertical cut, horizontal cut and 45 degree cut; vertical and horizontal).

(Other recipes call for thirty minutes of stirring gently after cutting the curd, I’ve found this to be counter-productive and ladle curds almost instantly after the five minutes.)

Ladle curds gently into butter-muslin lined in a colander, let drain for 5 minutes.

Pick up the butter-muslin (filled with the feta-curds of course!) and slowly for ten minutes squeeze the excess whey from the curds. (Yes, this can perhaps be done other methods, but I’ve found this to be more “personal”).
Afterwords fill a mold with the curds. Curds will be soft but will firm up enough to flip after ten minutes.

Drain in colander for one hour, flipping the cheese in the mold every 15 minutes.
“Knoch” the cheese in the mold once in a while to ensure whey expelling.
Once one hour of flipping and “knocking”, let drain at room temperature for 24 hours.
Dress the cheese for about four hours in a mold/colander and apply three pounds of pressure.
Once 24 hours of ripening has finished produce your whey-brine (20 oz of whey and five tablespoons of kosher salt.

Age feta for a day and a half for semi-crumbly texture. Three days to produce a normal-crumbly feta texture.
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After feta has aged keep in refrigerator for up to one week and of course , enjoy!

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This post is linked to:
My Meatless Monday @ My Sweet and Savory
Tuesday Twister @ GNOWFGLINS
Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays @ Simply Sugar & Gluten Free
Two for Tuesday Recipe Blog Hop hosted by many bloggers

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About the author: Tiffany is a real food mama who lives in Oregon. She is a stay at home mom of three coconut babies. She is passionate about traditional and healing foods. As a true believer in the health benefits of coconut, she uses coconut products in almost all her cooking. Subscribe to The Coconut Mama’s Newsletter for more articles like this one.

9 comments… add one

  • Carol August 16, 2010, 3:34 pm

    I want a cheese making thingy!! Birthday is coming up….hmmm….love cheese, love this!! First time here, great post.
    Carol

    Reply
  • Elizabeth Walling August 17, 2010, 7:15 am

    Very cool! Cheesemaking will be my next adventure… but it will probably be a few months till I'm ready (mentally ready for the most part!). Sometime this year or next year we should be getting our own goat milk, so I plan on doing goat milk cheese when that time comes. Good quality cheese is so pricey and my kids never like the taste so I hope to overcome both those obstacles by doing it at home.

    Reply
  • girlichef August 17, 2010, 7:45 am

    mmmm…homemade feta is my favorite kind. I dig your press…I just use the “cheap” method…wrapping barbell weights in foil, LOL!! I'll aspire to your press… Delicious recipe, thank you for sharing it with Two for Tuesdays this week =)

    Reply
  • a moderate life August 17, 2010, 6:20 pm

    Hey mamma! Very cool when a man takes up a hobby that is so delicious! Hope you get your nose in there if you really want to! Feta is a favorite of mine too-thanks for sharing on the two for tuesday recipe blog hop! Alex@amoderatelife

    Reply
  • Butterpoweredbike August 18, 2010, 4:08 pm

    I've got a serious case of cheese press envy! What a great set up. I always use the barbell method, too. How wonderful to get into cheese making. Thanks for linking up with Two for Tuesday.

    Reply
  • Bizzy B. Bakes August 22, 2010, 3:33 am

    I have not yet gotten the urge to make my own cheese. Notice, the YET.

    I love feta cheese and I bet the freshness of yours outshines storebought.

    Thanks for sharing this at My Meatless Mondays.

    Reply
  • Christy August 23, 2010, 5:01 pm

    I am not a huge feta fan but I bet if I had some homemade I would come over to the other side!! What a great hobby! thanks for linking this to Two for Tuesdays!

    Reply
  • Carmen Bruno August 25, 2010, 8:34 pm

    Hi Tiffany, thanks for visiting me today! I just recently ordered some coconut oil, flakes and cream, so I'm back into baking with coconut, I've missed having it in my kitchen. I'll be visiting you again soon! you've got amazing recipes. so glad you shared your cheese making journey. I've made some soft cheese in the past. would love to be able to make some with sheep's milk, i hear it's even healthier then goat's milk.

    p.s. do you follow Tropical Traditions' on Twitter, that is where I found out about them sponsoring a giveaway.
    Shalom~ Carmen

    Reply
  • Emma August 26, 2010, 2:13 am

    My friend's coming over this weekend to teach me how to make feta. I'm so excited. Besides regular cheese, feta is the one I eat the most of.
    You've made it look really easy here. I hope it is!

    Reply

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