French Goat Cheese Recipe

Learn how to make this French goat cheese recipe from goat's milk, including cheesemaking supplies and utensils needed to make homemade goat cheese.

Homemade goat cheeses.

Homemade goat cheeses.

PHOTO: FOTOLIA/NOAM

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Learn how to make this French goat cheese recipe using goat's milk.

Making Goat Cheese From Scratch

How to Make Goat Milk Cheese

French Goat Cheese Recipe

An uncooked goat cheese made in little cakes. You'll need plastic cheese molds. (See "cheesemaking tips" at the end of this article.)

To 1 1/2 gallons of whole goat milk, add 1 cup buttermilk. Let this stand at room temperature (70 degrees Fahrenheit) for 2 hours to ripen. Heat milk slowly to 86 degrees. Dissolve one-half tablet rennet in 1/2 cup lukewarm water. Gently stir into milk and let rest until curd is formed and begins to separate from whey (liquid). Using a slotted spoon, scoop large curds into molds, filling the molds to the top. Sprinkle 1/2 to 1 teaspoon salt over each and set to drain on rack.

The next day the cheese will have shrunk to half the size of the mold. If it's firm and holds its shape it's ready to remove from the mold. Gently slide knife blade around edge of mold to remove cheese. Set each cake on a rack to drain further. After a bit of a rind has formed (several hours), powder some salt in a blender and rub on outside of cheese. After it has aged to desired flavor (two to five days in a cool place), cover and place in refrigerator. It will keep for about a week.

Serving ideas: Crumble and mix with some garlic salt, minced onions or fresh chives, and serve on crackers or crusty French bread. I also like it in salads or as a topping for baked potatoes.

Cheesemaking Supplies:

Fresh goat milk
Buttermilk (this acts as the starter culture)
Rennet* (an enzyme that makes the warm milk form curds)
Salt (Sea salt, cheese salt or kosher salt without iodine)

Cheesemaking Utensils:

Cooking pot: 5-quart enamel or stainless steel kettle
Slotted spoon
Large knife or spatula
Cheesecloth
Colander
Cheese molds (for French Goat Cheese)
String (for Mild Cheddar)
Rack for draining
Dairy thermometer (recommended but not required)

*Rennet may be available at natural food stores or supermarkets.


Goat Milk Cheesemaking Tips:

If you don't have a dairy thermometer, 86 degrees feels lukewarm to the touch, and 102 degrees is very hot but still tolerable.

You can buy cheese molds or make your own from inexpensive, 16-ounce plastic tumblers. Perforate each tumbler by running a hot 10-penny nail through the bottom and up the sides in a random pattern. The more small holes, the better the whey drains. Rinse out cups to wash away any plastic residue before you use them.