I keep buying a gallon of fat-free milk at my local store because it’s cheaper than the other sizes. The problem is, I am the only one who drinks fat-free milk in my house and I never seem to get to the whole gallon before it goes bad.
This time, instead of allowing this to happen, I made my own cottage cheese. It was insanely easy. Here’s how:
(Note: Although I made this with one-third of a gallon of fat-free milk, I adjusted the recipe for a full gallon.)
1 gallon fat-free milk
.75 cup white vinegar
You’ll also need a:
Cheesecloth or any other porous towel (good to have in a kitchen anyway)
Pour your milk into a pan
Using a thermometer, position it so that is it touching the milk but not the pan. Heat the milk up to 120 degrees.
When it reaches that temperature, turn off the heat. Add the vinegar. Let sit for a half hour.
Now a weird thing happens. The milk curdles and separates into curds and whey, a greenish gross liquid. You might think you are doing it wrong, but no, that’s what’s supposed to happen.
Put a cheesecloth across a colander and dump the mixture out into it. Let the green stuff drain away for about 3 minutes. Wrap the cottage cheese in the cheesecloth and run under cool tap water for about 3 more minutes. While you do this, knead the cheese with your fingers.
Finally, pour the cheese into a bowl. You have just made cottage cheese.
I made about a cup of cheese, so I’m guessing the above recipe makes about three cups. I ate it for breakfast this morning by mixing it with some honey, salt, and fresh figs. Let me tell you, it was awesome.
Another way to fix it is to mix it with some half-n-half and salt. Or you can use it to cook in lasagna or any other pasta dish that calls for ricotta.
Cost of Dish: Although I’m not convinced making cottage cheese saves you much compared to buying it in the store, it does save you money if you have extra skim milk around that would otherwise go bad. On top of that, homemade tastes better than store-bought, and that’s worth extra in my book.