A selection of craft information for artisans of the HFS.

    Making Cream Cheese


    Posts : 81
    Join date : 2011-05-30

    Making Cream Cheese Empty Making Cream Cheese

    Post  Admin on Wed Jun 01, 2011 5:11 pm

    There are several good reasons for making cream cheese at home. The most fundamental is the fact that what is sold in supermarkets as cream cheese is nothing of the sort. It is an industrial concoction of milk, enough cream to claim it's in there and all sorts of gums and stabilizers to make it appear like what it isn't. Just read the ingredients on the label of your favorite brand. Cream cheese is supposed to be made from cream and would be outrageously expensive if it was.

    Needless to say, the concoction tastes nothing like real cream cheese but most people have never tasted real cream cheese so the hoax goes on.

    Making cream cheese at home would still cost 3 or 4 times what commercial stuff costs but the taste experience would delight any gourmet. HOWEVER I have developed a process that tastes as good as pure cream cheese but actually costs less than the commercial concotion.

    What's the secret? Ponder what cream is. It is the butter fat and some milk that rises to the top of fresh milk. Then ponder what butter is. It is simply the fat separated from most of the liquid. Because of it's long term keeping qualities and the dairy lobby, butter is much less expensive than the milk or cream that it came from.

    My process simply puts the butter back into the milk to produce cream at a fraction of the cost of fresh cream. The trick is to make the butter go back into the milk and not float around like an oil slick or iceberg.

    The objective is to emulsify the butter to make it think that it is water soluble and blend it back into the milk. The most convenient emulsifying agent is an egg yolk but this requires the mix to be pasteurized and imparts a yellow color to the end product. No problem, just points to keep in mind. The other agent is lecithin which is available as a food supliment at health food stores.


    The following recipe assumes that the cheese maker has a basic knowledge of cheese making or has at least read my cheese making web page. CHEESE MAKING


    1 quart milk
    1/2 lb butter
    2 tsp liquid lecithin
    1/2 tsp mesophilic cheese culture
    1/8 tsp liquid rennet
    1/4 tsp salt

    You can use any sort of milk, whole, 1%, reconstituted non-fat dry, powdered whole milk. I use the latter.

    1. Heat the milk to 145F.

    2. Melt the butter in the microwave and then pour into blender. Add lecithin and blend for a few minutes slowly adding warm milk till the blender is full. Pour this into the rest of the milk and stir thoroughly. If there is still some butter floating around, pour this off with some of the milk into the blender and whiz a bit more and return to the kettle.

    3. If you use an egg yolk instead of lecithin, hold the mix at 145F for 30 min to pasteurize.

    4. Cool the mix to 86F and add the meso culture. The amount specified assumes a direct vat culture. If you use fresh culture, I would guess about 2 tbs would do. Ripen for 30 minutes.

    5. Dilute 1/8 tsp liquid rennet in 1/4 cup water and then add only 1 tsp of this dillution to the cheese and mix thoroughly for several minutes.

    6. Cover the kettle and set aside at room temp to curdle and acidify. The prescribed pH for this cheese is 4.7 and it took 6 hours to reach this level at 70F. The books say 12-18 hours so I could probably reduce the amount of culture used.

    7. Cut the curd carefully and slowly stir in 2 cups of water at 170F then slowly heat this to 125F, stiring gently just to heat evenly.

    8. Pour curd into a cheese cloth line colander and then hang bag to drain.

    9. When dripping stops, press bag of curd lightly between boards for several hours. Lightly means a few pounds and flip the bag a few times.

    10. When the texture is as desired, put curds in a bowl and mix in the salt and then press the curd into small molds and cover with plastic wrap.

    As with most cheese, this one is best if brought to room temperature before serving.

      Current date/time is Sun Jun 16, 2019 9:59 pm