I’ve been nose deep in The Little Paris Kitchen cookbook I had been eagerly waiting to receive last week. The pictures are stunning and the recipes sound equally amazing. Once I thumbed over to the page where it read, Fromage Frais (Fresh cheese in French) I knew it was something I had to make – now. I was amazed at how simple the process was and how few ingredients it called for. Milk, lemon juice and yogurt. Once I made my first batch, ideas began to flood my brain. Ideas of mixing this with fresh herbs, like basil, thyme, oregano. You can take this cheese anywhere – savory or sweet. I really loved it as it was shown in the book, simply drizzled with honey on bread.
If I had to compare this cheese to another, I would say it tastes most similar to mozzarella cheese, with texture of ricotta.
Make this for an appetizer to go along with sliced bread or crackers at your next dinner party, or do it like me, just for the heck of making fresh cheese!
Boil milk, yogurt and lemon juice together until curds and whey begin to separate.
It will look similar to cottage cheese right before it is ready to strain.
Place a fine sieve over a large bowl and then line the sieve with cheese cloth (I tripled layered my cheese cloth).
Pour curds and whey into the cheese cloth lined sieve, letting all of the liquid drain off into the bowl.
Twist ball of cheese to help remove any excess liquid from the cheese. Carefully discard hot liquid.
Tie cheese cloth onto a wooden spoon and let hang over a bowl, without it touching the bottom so that any remainder liquid can drip off. Place in the refrigerator for 30 minutes or overnight.
Peel off cheese cloth and you’re left with one big hunky ball of cheese. But WAIT! it’s not ready yet. You need to season it with some salt. Trust me, you don’t want to skip this part…
Break cheese ball up in a bowl using a fork or clean hands. Pour in two tablespoons of heavy cream and salt and give it a good stir until well combined. Spoon onto toast or fresh warm bread.
Then taste-test it. If it needs it, add more salt or cream.
Spoon it on some fresh bread and add a heavy drizzle of honey and fresh berries. When in season, fresh figs would be killer with this.
8 cups organic 2% milk, preferably not homogenized
1/2 cup plain live or probiotic Greek yogurt, or regular plain yogurt
6 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice (about 1 1/2 lemons)
2 tablespoons heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon salt
Pour milk into a large stock pot and bring stove to a medium heat. Heat milk for about 20 minutes, or until it begins to for small bubbles around the sides and steam rises from the milk. Do not allow milk to boil. Remove from heat and let rest for 10 minutes.
Stir in yogurt and lemon juice into the heated milk and then let rest untouched for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes has passed, turn heat back on to a medium-high and bring to a boil. Boil until curds and whey (clear liquid and curds) begins to separate from each other.
Over a large bowl place a fine sieve over a large bowl lined with cheese cloth or a thin dish towel. Pour mixture in. Once all of the cheese is in the cheese cloth, carefully drain off the liquid in the bowl. Begin to carefully tighten cloth into a money bag, or ball shape by twisting it. You want to try to squeeze off any excess liquid from the cheese ball. Tie it around a wooden spoon and let it hand over a bowl (without touching the bottom) and place in the refrigerator for 30 minutes or over night. I let it set for about 2-3 hours. Pour off any liquid that may have dripped off from your cheese ball. Peel off cheese cloth and break it up into a bowl using a fork or clean hands. Add 2 tablespoons of heavy cream and salt to taste.
This recipe was adapted from The Little Paris Kitchen cookbook.