Monday, April 4, 2011

What Are You Doing With All That Milk?

Yes, just what AM I doing with all that milk?   Aside from using it to cook with and the occasional glass to drink, I am :

-making delicious cultured buttermilk and butter.  I put about a quart of cultured cream (meaning it has set out at room temperature for about 24 hours and then refrigerated for a short time) into my Bosch bowl with the wire whips.  I set the dial to one and let it run for about 10-15 minutes.  When I take off the lid I see lots of clumped butter.  I simply strain off the buttermilk and then press the butter to get all the milk out of it as well.  I put some cold water in the bowl and continue pressing the butter to release all the milk.  I pour off the water and continue the process until the water is almost clear.  Then I put the butter into a container and add it to my freezer.

-making yogurt.  This has not been going very well with the fresh milk.  I had been making yogurt in my crock pot with store bought milk and was successful with that, but it doesn't seem to work as well with fresh milk.  I have also heated the milk on the stove, mixed with yogurt and put into quart jars and incubated them in the dehydrator.  It took a very long time for the yogurt to thicken this way which made my yogurt VERY tart.  I hope to try the cooler method this week.  We'll see how that turns out!

- I decided to make the four quarts of yogurt into yogurt cheese that could be sweetened to counter the tartness.  Yummy!!   This has a cream cheese like consistency and we have used it to top oven pancakes and this weekend I made my traditional blueberry/cream cheese pies using the yogurt cheese and making homemade pie filling instead of buying a can from the store.  Oh, my!  This pie is wonderful!

-made ricotta cheese....kinda/sorta.  Following the directions in Nourishing Traditions for cream cheese,  I set out two gallons of milk to clabber.  After two days the whey was one the bottom of the jars and the milk was a jiggly mass of curds.  I poured this through a strainer lined with an old pillow case and as I had a lot, I finally poured it all into another old pillow case and suspended it for several hours over a large pot to continue removing the whey.  When I dumped it all out I wasn't sure what I had created!  It didn't look at all like cream cheese, but more like very large curd cottage cheese.  I decided to put it in my Bosch and mixed it up with a little (very little buttermilk) and added some salt.  We finally decided I had made cottage cheese, but mixing it up made it look and taste like ricotta.  I used it to make two pans of lasagna for the freezer and today I will use the remainder to make two pans of enchiladas that call for cottage cheese in the recipe.

-What am I doing with the whey?  Dumping it.  I know, such a waste, but I have so much milk that I am using it to soak my grains for baked goods and I don't know that I will use any for lacto fermenting vegetables as Caedmon is allergic to dairy and I don't want to add any to our vegetables.  I may try lacto fermenting some salsa this summer as Caedmon is also allergic to tomatoes.  Freezing the whey right now is not an option as my freezers are "whey" too full!

-I made a pint of French Sour Cream from Nourishing Traditions this weekend.  I haven't tasted it yet, so  have no idea whether or not this worked.  You simply take a pint of fresh cream, add a tablespoon of buttermilk and let it sit out for 20-24 hours then refrigerate.  I'll try it out tonight on our enchiladas!

-This week I should get my canner in the mail.  I want to try to can the milk for future baking.  I have heard canning it does change the taste, but it is still good to cook with.

-I also hope to order rennet online so we can make mozzarella cheese.

-Do you have any other ideas of what I can do with this bounty of milk?

-I am going to really try NOT to mention milk on this blog again this
week....but don't hold me to it!

Linking up today over at


Jill @ The Prairie Homestead said...

I love talkin' milk! Your yogurt cheese pie sounds delicious. What a great idea. Thanks for sharing this post over at the HOmestead Barn Hop!

Bill & Glory said...

What an educational read this was! My mom used to make her own cottage cheese when I was growing up on our farm. She used the whey to make a traditional Mennonite soup which had a thickened whey base and small dumpling-like pasta. We also ate vereniky that had been cooked in whey.

Dalyn said...

I use the whey for baking, making soup stock, and in the mornings make it into smoothies with frozen bananas, berries, raw spinache and flax seeds- my husband's favorite. YOu can also mix honey and a little lemon into it and chill it for a powerful, protein packed "lemonade". :)

Anonymous said...

Sometimes its a full time job trying to figure out what to do with all the milk. I make mozz. cheese and then bread and fry for a quick lunch. Yogurt can be tricky but I've found that it must be taken to 180 and then cooled down to 110 before it will set. All bacteria has to be killed for yogurt to take place. This is a bummer for me but can't make it any other way. I put it on my kitched counter wrapped in a heating pad for 4-6 hours. I also add a 1/4 cup of powdered milk. I add the whey to the chicken's and dog's food. They love this little treat.
Rennett is inexpensive at my local amish stores.

Nicki said...

I am learning a lot from you! I just found you from Raising Homemakers. We don't currently have a garden or farm, but I do as much "homesteading" as possible while we hunt for a little place in the country. I am a 2nd generation homeschooler, and we grew up raising whatever we could. I also used to have a garden, and I look forward to doing it again!

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