Saturday, 8 April 2017

Cheesemaking at Cornersmith

Last weekend I made cheese.


My friends have called me the Dairy Queen for decades. 
My love of cheese and cheese dishes is legendairy!

So a cheesemaking course at Cornersmith was always going to be something I had to do.
I just had to find a free weekend.

Kristen Allan is the cheesemaker; ricotta, yoghurt and labneh are the cheeses we learn to make.
Slowing cooking is the philosophy; sustainable, ethical food production is the aim.
And good times are the name of the game.

The course begins in a relaxed manner.
A platter of homemade cheeses, pickles and bread are provided for us to sample as we get to know each other over a glass of wine (or homemade cordial).

After a discussion about what type of milk we should use and the various processes involved we get stuck in.
We don our aprons, pick up tools and begin to slowly heat a pot of milk, lemon juice and salt.




Kristen told us lots of amazing facts about curds and whey, including the uses of whey to wash your face and to water your pot plants.


After the appropriate cooking time, it's time to separate the curds and whey.
Ricotta is born!



Kristen then showed us how to make our own yoghurt before providing us with enough of her homemade yoghurt (made earlier as it takes a day to make yoghurt from scratch) for us to start our own labneh.
  

I have since made my own yoghurt at home and another batch of labneh. 
Kristen provides a cheese hotline so that we can contact her with any problems.
My second batch of labneh ended up tasting quite different to the first - it may have been the milk I started with or not enough salt. 
I'll add some herbs and olive oil to see if that improves the flavour.

It's all very, very fascinating & I can't wait to have more time over Easter to make another batch!

This post is part of Saturday Snapshot and Weekend Cooking.

21 comments:

  1. Wow that looks fascinating and it looks like you learnt alot. Enjoy your easter of cheese making xx

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  2. Love cheese....and the idea of a 'cheese hotline' is great!
    You know my love affair with France..well, I had a 5 diff cheeses FED-EX'ed to me
    so I can imagine I'm in La Douce France. Bries was superb (...always is) but the Cantal(Auvergne) cheese surprised me. Take it slow with this one b/c it is a bit salty. Today I try Maroilles (Pas-de-Calais).
    Fromage....love it!!

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    1. Another thing we share Nancy :-)

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  3. You make it look like a lot of fun! I wonder if you'll do it at home.

    best... mae at maefood.blogspot.com

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    1. I've already made one batch at home, and loved doing it. So I hope ti becomes a regular thing. I'd like to become the person who brings her homemade lebneh and crusty bread to dinner parties :-)

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  4. What fun. I have made ricotta and yogurt before, and now you've got me interested in doing it again!

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  5. I love cheeses, too, and what a fascinating process. When I was a kid, I remember watching my mom make cottage cheese.

    Thanks for sharing, and for visiting my blog.

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  6. A friend and I attended a program on cheesemaking at a homebrew conference several years ago and it sounded so fun! Looks that way too. What a great place you found to learn about it!

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    1. Cornersmith also does pickling courses which I have booked into in June :-)

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  7. Thanks for sharing -- very interesting! I have a friend who wants to start his own cheesemaking business.

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  8. Great photos of the cheese-making equipment and the process. This sounds like a course my husband would enjoy. I love legen-dairy!

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    1. I was hoping someone would pick up on that Sandra! Thanks for being the one :-)

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  9. I'm a cheese lover too and the course sounds so fun!

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  10. Another thing to aspire to. Have a great week. Cheers from Carole's Chatter

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  11. I keep kefir going at all times, and have made ricotta, feta and yogurt, but not the hard cheeses. Decided with the volume of milk required, would need to get a cow or goat first. Sounds like you had an enjoyable class.

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  12. What an interesting class. Great that you can learn to make your own cheeses.

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  13. What a neat experience! I can honestly say I've never even thought of making my own cheese, it just always seemed so complicated and intimidating!

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  14. This looks like a fun way to spend the day, thanks for sharing it with us.

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  15. Wow, how fun! I wish we had a cheesemaking shop near us (we do have a cheese factory about 45 minutes away, but we can only eat--not make--the cheese there!)

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  16. How fun! I have always wanted to take a cheese-making class! ;-)

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