Monday, July 2, 2012

Making your own goat cheese

I debated where to write about making goat cheese - here or my Kitchen blog? In keeping with my efforts for a more sustainable home & making things myself.... I chose my Homestead blog :)

The second I saw this pin on Pinterest -  I pinned it, saved the recipe, printed the directions and added the ingredients to my shopping list. I love goat cheese people. Seriously adore it. I was excited.

Original Recipe...

....and my notes.

Make your own goat cheese

4 cups goat milk
1 cup buttermilk
2 Tb lemon juice
1/2 tsp salt
3 Tb Italian Seasoning (I used a blend complete with dried onion flakes, herbs, garlic & bits of sun dried tomatoes!)

Line a colander with a couple layers cheesecloth. Place lined colander over another bowl. Set aside.

Pour both milks into a medium saucepan. If you have an attachable thermometer - attach it. I only have a candy thermometer, so took the temperature every 3-5 minutes.

Set to medium heat and bring to a temperature of 170-185 degrees - your goal is for the milk to begin to separate and appear curdled.

Add 1 Tb lemon juice - it will REALLY curdle now!

Remove from heat and bring the temperature down to 120 degrees. Pour thru the cheesecloth lined bowl. The original recipe stated you can keep what drains in to the bottom bowl - whey - for protein shakes and whatnot. This pregnant lady didn't like the appearance or smell, so I poured it down the drain :(

Bring the sides of your cheesecloth up and to the middle. Tie or twist into a knot - I twisted it up. Place a plate on top, then place a heavy item like large canned good.

Place in the fridge and allow to drain for at least 2 hours.

Carefully take apart your plate, can and cheesecloth to reveal your wonderful cheese.

Scrap off the cheesecloth into a bowl or container. Add salt, seasonings and remaining lemon juice. Mix well. If you are super anxious, you can eat immediately. BUT I highly recommend you let all these wonderful flavors get to know each other in the fridge for a day or two before completely devouring it. I rolled the cheese into a log and wrapped tightly in cling wrap.

Congrats! Homemade goat cheese!

We loved this recipe so much. It is truly a treat to prepare and you can easily alter the seasonings based on your desired end product. Perhaps you love strawberry-goat cheese-spinach salads? Then just add salt and lemon to keep it simple. Or, add sun dried tomatoes, fresh herbs, sea salt... my goodness the options are endless.

The cheese lasts up to a week in the fridge - and when I compared the costs to goat cheese in my local markets, I was getting twice as much goat cheese for the same price if I'd bought it in the store!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Orange Creamsicle Cleaner

I am constantly looking for ways to save money, be more 'green' and make things myself. So, when I kept seeing pins on Pinterest for making your own discenfectant cleaner using vinegar I was very curious.

Amazing thing vinegar is. Sure, it doesn't smell too good. And yes, it may be the secret ingredient in your salsa, salad dressing or marinade. But did you also know that it's cleaning powers are comparable to bleach? Just not as harsh!

One particular concept caught my eye - let vinegar and orange peels steep. Strain. Use. Smells better.

I'm game!

I'm very happy with the end result. Over the course of a few days (and snacks) I put the peels of 5 oranges in a large, glass jar. Poured just enough vinegar to cover the peels, sealed the top and let it set on the counter (out of the sun) for a week. Then I strained it into a spray bottle. Voila!

The vinegar smell was still a little strong, so I added a few drops of orange extract and clear vanilla - smelled so much better!

Next time I will make a bigger batch and let it sit for 10-14 days for a stronger, natural orange scent.

Anyone else clean with vinegar?

Linked to:

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

My homestead on the range...

Welcome to From My Tiny Homestead
- it's our first post here on the range.

Well, not really a range as much as one precious acre.

And right now.... homestead is used lightly, though with optimism.

And I don't have a clothesline. (yet.) Nor do I ever look that happy doing laundry....


(had to be a 'but' somewhere, after an opening like that right?) I said, we have optimism. We have an acre, we have goals, we have fresh dirt waiting for change, we have aspiring green thumbs and eco-friendly inspirations. So, please join us as we develop and create our own homestead.

From My Tiny Kitchen focuses completely on food and recipes and I have yet another site coming soon (!) - but some of the goals of From My Tiny Homestead are:
  • gardening and all that entails
  • canning and food preserves
  • eco-friendly, homemade cleaners
  • my first venture into cloth diapers
  • creative ways to eliminate waste from your home
  • saving $$ creatively
  • edible landscaping
  • reduce, reuse, recycle!
  • home repairs and construction

I am very excited to introduce this new and exciting challenge in our lives. There will be plenty of posts, some giveaways, book reviews - plenty of fun activity!