I use a culture to make this Fromage Blanc. I used to make a goat milk Chevre using buttermilk and liquid vegetable rennet but using the Fromage Blanc culture gives a more consistent result. This cheese is also a little drier than the Chevre, which I like, it makes it easier to crumble. It can be used in any recipe calling for cream cheese or goat cheese.
All you have to do is heat one gallon of milk to 86 degrees F, stir in the packet of culture and let it sit overnight on the counter. In the morning, pour the curds into a piece of real cheesecloth (not the stuff from the grocery store) and hang to drain for 6 to 8 hours.
I then mix in 1 to 1-1/2 teaspoons of salt and put it into a container in the fridge. If desired, you can also mix in some dill, garlic and chives, diced jalapenos, sun dried tomatoes, or anything else that would be found in "flavored" cream cheese. This cheese also freezes exceptionally well but freeze it without the extra add-ins and mix them in after thawing.
I buy my cheesemaking supplies from Caprine Supply but they are also available from New England Cheesemaking Supply.
This Fromage Blanc is really good stirred into pasta sauce to make it creamy, stuffed in celery, crumbled over a salad, spread on a cracker, or combined with some shredded cheddar to make a substitute for "processed cheese spread." More on that later! ;)
Linking up with The Country Homemaker Hop, Rurality Blog Hop, Farmgirl Friday and What I Am Eating.