Feta styled cheese is surprisingly easy to make:
Ingredients4 litres of full cream milk
1/8 - 1/4 teaspoon of calcium chloride diluted in 1/4 cup of unchlorinated water
1 dose of MO 030 Mesophilic starter culture
1/4 teaspoon liquid rennet dissolved in 1/4 cup of unchlorinated water
2 tablespoons of cheese salt
Equipmentlarge stainless steel pot
large slotted spoon
long bladed knife
one 90cm square piece of cheese cloth
piece of string
|draining the curd|
Add the starter culture and stir well and leave at 30 degC to incubate for 1 hour.
Add the rennet solution and stir well using an up and down motion to ensure even distribution then allow to rest for 1 hour maintaining 30 degC
|pressing the feta |
for a denser product
Once the curd is firm and gives a clean break cut the curd into 1.5cm cubes then let it rest for 10 minutes.
Gently stir the curds for 20 minutes breaking up any clumps and all the while maintaining the temperature at 30 degC
Gently pour the curds into a colander, lined with your cloth and sitting in another large stainless steel pot or bowl, and allow to drain for a few minutes.
Tie the cloth together to form a bag and hang to drain over the 2nd pot to reserve the whey and allow to drain for 5 hours.
untie the bag and cut the curds into 2.5cm cubes
sprinkle the curds with cheese salt and allow to age for 4 days stored in the fridge.
PreservingCut the aged curds into 1/4's and pack into a sterile preserving jar with pepper corns and bay leaves and cover with a blend of half sunflower/ half olive oil. The olive oil will slightly solidify in the fridge if used on it's own, but the oil and other elements will impart a flavour that is very nice while keeping the feta fresh.
We just mixed in the preserved green peppercorns before we drained and hung the curd. Now cut and salted it is ready for preserving
Feta Stuffed Mini Bell Peppers
Preparation:9 mini bell peppers (tiny capsicums)
1/2 cup salt
2 cups water
slice off the top of the capsicums and remove the seeds and pith. mix the salt into the water making a brine solution and submerge the capsicums in the brine for a week.
|store bought on the left|
home made on the right
1/2 cup home made labna
sprinkle of chili flakes (to taste)
pinch of greek oregano
6 capers chopped finely
freshly ground black pepper
Method:mash the 2 cheeses together and add the other ingredients. Taste and adjust the seasonings to your liking, I ended up adding more chili. Drain the capsicums. Put the mix into a piping bag and force into the center of the capsicums until they are full. Chili the capsicums once filled.
If you want to preserve these morsels submerge them in extra light olive oil in an airtight container in the fridge.
Eat as finger food, as part of a cheese platter or slice and put on mini toasts for an appetiser or cocktail party fair.
Arancini - Risotto Balls
juice 1 small lemon
1 bay leaf
3 cups chicken stock (can substitute 1 cup with a cup of whey from cheese making)
2 rashers of bacon finely diced
home made feta - enough to put a good cube inside the center of each rice ball
1/2 cup home made feta diced
1/4 grated parmesan
2 cups bread crumbs
salt and pepper to taste
Methodplace your rice in a microwave dish with the bay leaf, lemon juice, paprika and 1 cup of liquid and cook in the microwave on high for 6 mins. Stir and add another cup of liquid and repeat. Stir add the last of the liquid and another 6 mins should finish it off.
Add the diced bacon, remove the bay leaf and stir the bacon through then let sit covered until the mix cools enough to handle and not scramble the egg.
Add the feta and parmesan and eggs and mix well.
preheat your deep fryer to 170degC
Place the bread crumbs in a bowl and take a golf
ball sized amount of the rice mixture and roughly form into a ball. push a cube of feta into the center of the ball and reform it. Dredge each ball in bread crumbs and place gently into the hot oil. Lightly brown each ball turning gently and drain on kitchen paper.
|Feta, Pear & Rocket (Arugula) Salad|
Feta, Pear & Rocket (Arugula) Salad
Ingredientspressed feta, cut into thin wedges
firm ripe pear, cut into thin wedges
freshly ground pepper to taste
Arrange your salad and season ... that is all