My son Zach has a beautiful way of adapting traditional recipes in his cooking. For our studio lunches, he makes a salad with handmade, moist farm cheese crumbled on top. We also enjoy it (probably too much) with fresh baked bread and crackers.
Farm cheese got its name because all of its ingredients could be found on any farm. Many “well-off” households during my grandparents’ youth had their own farms, or at the very least, one cow to supply milk for the family.
This very simple recipe can be made with just a few ingredients from your refrigerator: milk, buttermilk, and lemon. My refrigerator is always stocked with organic milk. I have lemon, which I use for hot tea. And buttermilk often lingers after biscuit-making endeavors on the weekends.
The added convenience is farm cheese is fast and easy to make. It requires no special equipment, except cheesecloth.
This cheese recipe is Zach’s variation of traditional farm cheese, much like my great-aunt made.
4 cups fresh milk
1 cup buttermilk
Place milk and buttermilk in medium saucepan over low heat. Gently stir occasionally until curds begin to float in the mixture.
Line a sieve with cheesecloth. Gently pour the milk through the cheese cloth and strain the liquid. Gather the cloth and squeeze out extra liquid.
Set some liquid aside in case cheese gets too dry.
While the cheese is still warm, season with salt, pepper, and lemon zest, to taste.
Take your mold of choice and place the cheese cloth (ball) into the mold.
Press to form and eat fresh.