Feta Cheese

I bake, cook, like wine, and get easily distracted.  I also make cheese., which if you have read my Haloumi cheese post you’d know about & if you haven’t well it gives the background to my cheese making.

I think my feta is my signature cheese, I’ve made it for enough people and I make it more often than any other cheese (well I only make 2 other types but you know).

I prefer my feta to most bought ones.  It’s not crumbly but more of a creamy type, and y it’s delicious. There are a lot of steps to making it, don’t be overwhelmed its EASY. With just a couple of fancy ingredients available from any cheese making store (there’s heaps online), you could make feta too, really.

Let’s make feta

There is of course fancy milk with fancy culture added

Its heated up

tipped into a sexy blue esky

there’s rennet action

curds and way (eat your heart out little miss muffet)

draining of curds in cheese hoops

totally easy

Feta cheese – recipe adapted from Udder Delights Cheese making class

3 litres of unhomogenized milk (must be unhomogenized)

1/3rd of 1/4 of stater culture

.7ml rennet (this is dependent on your rennet you may need more or less)

10 ml cooled boiled water

100g salt

500mls boiling water

Pop milk in saucepan, add culture to milk.  Heat milk to 35 degrees Celsius (you need to accurate with the temp)

Pour milk into an esky (or something that will maintain the temp)

Put lid on esky, leave in warmish place for 30 mins.

Mix rennet with water and add to milk while stirring for about 30 seconds

Leave for 1 hour.  Don’t move the esky in this hour as its already forming the curd and you risk shattering it before its fully formed

After the hours up take a long knife and cut the curds into 2 cm cubes. I cut it starting from one corner of the esky in 2 cm intervals over to the other side, then go to one of the other corner and cut across to the other side (it’s a bit hard to explain but you want to have it looking like its cut into diamond shapes)

Leave for 1/2 an hour, the you kind of lift the curd. just use a slotted spoon and dip it in and lift the curd up.

Leave 20 mins, stir the curd then leave for another 20 mins

Stir the curd again, it should be sticking together (not just loose cubes)

take some cheese hoops (or any container that has perforations on the bottom & sides) and line with clean chux cloth (yes really chux). Then put these on a wire rack and over put rack over a bowl.

Using slotted spoon fill up cheese hoops with curds. Fill them right up till almost over flowing

Leave for 1 hours, then tip upside down (you will want to have folded the chux on the open end of cheese hoops before doing this)

After another hour tip right way up.  All this tipping helps with draining off the whey

Leave to finishing draining overnight

The next morning you will see the cheese has dropped to about 1/3 its size (this is good, all the whey has drained off), giving you a solid cheese

Now you need to put your cheese in brine.  The brine is made by mixing the salt and boiling water together until salt is dissolved.  It’s a good idea to do this the night before you need to use it so it’s cool as you can’t put the cheese in hot brine

Soak it in brine for 30 mins, then drain on rack for 1 hour.

It’s now ready to eat.  You can pop it in the fridge and it will keep for just over a week. To keep it longer you can marinate it in oil.  The oil will usually be 30 % olive oil & 70 % other oil and you can put garlic, chilli, herbs etc into the oil to flavour the oil and feta.

ta da Feta