Our friend Tasia, owner of Alabama’s Belle Chevre creamery, has been busy with several new projects since we last saw her at Southern Makers. Her first cookbook, which features a foreword by Natalie (and is full of amazing Southern and Greek-inspired recipes), was released last year. Tasia has been crafting new recipes, teaching cooking classes, working on a second book and, most recently, she opened a new cheese tasting room at their flagship storefront in Elkmont, Alabama.
A few months ago we discovered Belle Chevre’s DIY Kits are perfect for gifting (and for starting your own goat cheese tasting room). We often snack on Tasia’s amazing cheese creations here in the studio. Tasia notes that her goat cheese can be used as a base for many of her recipes, as well as a substitute for mayonnaise, sour cream, cream cheese, and butter. The possibilities are endless. We recently substituted some of our homemade goat cheese for mayonnaise in a warm potato salad, sprinkled with fresh herbs from the farmers’ market, and served alongside baked organic chicken. The results were richer and creamier than a traditional potato salad. And a bit of leftover goat cheese was devoured atop fresh pumpkin bread with some local honey. Decadent and delicious. Here’s Tasia’s recipe for making goat cheese at home.
HOMEMADE GOAT CHEESE
1 quart goat milk
Juice of 1 lemon
Salt and pepper
Fresh chives, chopped
Cheesecloth of cotton kitchen towel
In a heavy-bottomed pot, bring goat milk to a boil over medium heat. Take off the heat. Immediately stir the lemon juice into the milk. Let stand for a couple of minutes, so the milk can curdle.
Lay out a cheesecloth (or a cotton kitchen towel) in a bowl. Pour in the milk-lemon mixture. The curds simply resemble curdled milk at this point so don’t worry that they will pour right through the cheesecloth – it will catch them. Tie the ends of the cloth together so it becomes a bag. Hang it on a wooden spoon over the bowl or over your sink and let the bag hang free. The whey should strain out of the cheesecloth for at least two hours.
Before taking the cheese out of the cloth, squeeze the cloth to extract more liquid from the cheese. Transfer the cheese from the cloth to a bowl and season it with salt and pepper and fresh chives. Ready to serve.
Recipe reprinted with permission from NewSouth Books from Tasia’s Table by Tasia Malakasis.