Cheese Making Classes
|Labneh-A Yogurt Cream Cheese with Olive Oil, Dried Chili Peppers, Peppercorns and Fresh Rosemary|
I recently took a class on how to make cheese! I have been bugging everyone I know about my desire to learn how to make cheese for a little over a year. Finally a found a place within a few hours of my farm, that taught people how to make their own cheese. The two day class is taught by The Ploughshare Institute For Sustainable Culture near Waco, Texas.http://www.sustainlife.org/
On the first day they taught us how to make soft cheeses. We learned how to make butter, cultured buttermilk, sour cream, cream cheese, yogurt, labneh, cottage cheese, feta cheese, marinated feta cheese, ricotta, whey ricotta, mozzarella, herbed cheese logs, homemade queso, and the most wonderful whey drink! It was not just a sit down and take notes class as they demonstrated how to make the cheeses and dairy products. We actually got to don aprons and make the cheeses. We also gathered fresh herbs from the nearby herb garden to add to the cheeses. We ate and we ate cheese the whole blissful day!
|The Cheese Cave|
On the second day they taught us how to make hard cheese. They began by teaching us how to make our own cheese starter cultures and the step by step process of making hard cheese. We even learned how to use a cheese press! We then divided up and each person or a couple of people worked together to make a different variety of cheese. We made pepper jack, cheddar, Colby jack, parmesan, and caraway Gouda. We even took a trip to visit the cheese cave, which is a room built about 16 feet underground where the cheeses aged. There were racks stretching up to the ceiling full of wonderful cheeses. And guess what? We ate and ate cheese the whole blissful day!
|Brie with Fig Leaves and Smoke Mozzarella|
Our instructors were knowledgeable, supportive, friendly and caring. To me it was a glorious two days in cheese heaven! We ate so many wonderful cheeses that we made and so many other cheeses that they made. It was a cheese lover’s paradise!
|My Cheese Class Bounty|
We were also given a book, Cheese Making at Home: A Guide to Making Soft & Hard Cheeses, published by The Ploughshare Institute For Sustainable Culture. We also were able to take home a variety of cheeses that we made in class. But most importantly we able to take home the skill of making cheese in our own homes. Only thing left was to head home inspired by our teachers to practice our skills at making artisanal cheeses!