Chevre Cheesemaking Formula
Mary Karlin, Elements of Taste
Yields 1 1/2 pounds
Chevre is the common name for spreadable goat cheese. This fresh cheese is the easiest to make and in its log shape is the most recognizable goat cheese in the US. It often has dried herbs or other flavorful additives blended into it.
Milk: whole pasteurized goat’s milk
Start to Finish: 24+ hours
Making the cheese: ½ hour + 12 hours ripening + 12hours to drain
1 gallon pasteurized goat’s milk, at room temperature for 1 hour
1 packet direct-set mesophilic starter for chevre (contains starter bacteria and rennet)
½ teaspoon fine sea salt
Equipment & Supplies:
Non-reactive 4-quart stock pot
Flexible wire, long handle stainless steel whisk
Metal bowl or plastic bucket as sink
1-Heat the milk over a low flame to 86 degrees F. Add the starter and mix well using a whisk to dissolve the starter.
2- Cover and off heat maintain a temperature of no lower than 72 degrees, allowing the milk to ripen for 12 hours. (Tip: Either ripen during the day to drain at night or ripen overnight to drain the next morning.)
3-The curds are ready when they are in one large mass in the pot. They will be the consistency of thick yogurt and the whey will be floating around the sides of the pot. The whey will be very clear.
4- Place a plastic strainer over a bowl or plastic bucket large enough to capture the whey. Line the strainer with a single layer of dampened butter muslin and gently ladle the curds into it. Gently toss the curds with the salt then cover with the tails of the muslin. Leave to drain at room temperature (72 degrees) for 6-12 hours. The longer the curds drain, the drier the finished cheese will be.
5-Remove the cheese from the cheesecloth and store refrigerated in a covered container for up to 1 week.
-After the initial temperature of 86 degrees has been reached, with heat off, set the pot under a stove hood light to maintain the desired temperature. You might also place the covered pot in another warm area of the kitchen .
-If you want a soft, creamy consistency, drain for 6 or so hours. If you want to create a log of chevre, let the curds drain for up to 12 hours so the cheese can be formed more easily