(Homemade) Cheese Please!

Homemade Lavender Rubbed Goat Cheese

Homemade Lavender Rubbed Goat Cheese

A year or so ago, my husband bought my mom one of those DIY kits to make goat cheese. While things like cheese molds and citric acid were included, she wasn’t sure where to buy the goat milk necessary for the project. Since Portland has ample co-ops and natural food stores, it seemed like the perfect adventure for her most recent trip down to visit me.

I’ve actually made cheese before….a single batch of paneer cheese in culinary school more than 10 years ago. So, yeah we are far from professionals!

And yet, our very first attempt turned out much better than I could have ever hoped. The kit has directions for two different types of goat cheese, one firm and one creamy. It’s good to keep in mind though that the goat milk used as well as other variables can affect the texture of the cheese. And so the guide tells you “if your creamy cheese is firm, and your firm cheese is creamy, just rename them” — advice I can get behind!

We tried to make more of a creamy cheese but it turned out fairly firm, more of the consistency of feta though less tangy. My husband said this most because our goat milk was raw, instead of pasteurized. But the salt content was right on the mark so we were successful with that aspect at least!

Our batch actually produced two small wheels. We cut one into cubes which were then marinated in EVO, chili flakes and lemon zest. After sitting overnight, we tossed them in a simple green salad for lunch the next day. So good!

The other wheel was cut down the center. One half I rolled in lavender and the other in fennel pollen. I’m not sure which I liked better — they were both pretty fabulous.

Anyways here’s some pictures from our adventure:

Raw Goat Milk for Cheese Making

Raw Goat Milk for Cheese Making

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– – – – On Pins and Needles – – – – My mother pays me a visit

I am not, by any stretch of the imagination, a skilled crafter. Sure, I can crochet a scarf that looks like a scarf and I have successfully made some mosaic stepping stones. I even managed to make these lovely vase fillers after some inspiration from Pinterest. But many things, like knitting, quilting and sewing take a little too much precision for me to attempt.

Instead I am the person who brings her too-long pants to her 94-year-old grandma to have them hemmed. And, the last time, to have a button sewn back on. It’s my not-so-secret shame. I guess my mom caught on to my antics though and the next thing I knew she was planning a sewing weekend for us so I could learn to hem my own clothes.

This was back in December and the holiday madness and exhaustion afterwards kept us from getting together until last weekend. On Friday she showed up at our house in Portland with the Singer she bought long before I was born, ready to teach me the ways of the needle.

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