Homemade Goat Cheese {Chevre}

February 2nd, 2012  |  Other, Side Dishes, Small Bites & Entertaining Grub  |  0 Comments

Give me a platter of cheese and chances are I'm diving in head first to any variation of a goat cheese that might be present.  I also look for any opportunity to put it into anything else I'm cooking.  It's my fave cheese for sure.  Especially Humbolt Fog.  Maybe I shift toward goat cheese because it reminds me of the goat milk my parents fed me as an infant.  Oh yeah, that's what happens when you grow up on a farm in South Texas and your daddy happens to have a herd of goats that keeps the grass from overgrowing out in the pasture.  "Here baby, your mama doesn't want to nurse you?  Have some fresh goat milk."**  Is that strange?  I don't know, I think I turned out all right.  A little bit redneck?  Yeah.

Anyway, I've always had a taste for goat cheese and once I found this recipe on Kiss My Spatula for the homemade variation, I couldn't wait to try it out.  I recently tackled homemade ricotta and it was incredibly amazing, so I when I saw a quart of goat milk at Trader Joe's the other day, I had to grab it and give a whirl.  It was so easy.  And so delicious.  And was ready in about an hour with little to no work.  You must have a thermometer and some cheesecloth, but other than that, its just goat milk and lemon.

I had originally planned to make some goat cheese wontons with a blackberry compote, but the freshness of the goat cheese urged me not to do anything else to it but just taste it in its pure form with some crackers.  The lemon zest and basil added just a touch of complementary flavor without overpowering the cheese.  I highly recommend you try this recipe out....bring it to your Super Bowl gathering on Sunday.  You'll give that ol' pot of chili a run for its money!

Homemade Goat Cheese
Recipe adapted from Kiss My Spatula


1 quart goats milk, pasteurized

1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 tablespoon lemon zest

1 tablespoon basil, chopped {or torn}

salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste


Layer 2-3 layers of cheesecloth over a strainer/colander placed over a deep bowl and set aside.

Juice lemons and set aside.

In a medium-sized, heavy bottomed saucepan, pour in goat milk.  Heat over medium-high heat until a thermometer registers 180 degrees.  Turn off heat, pour in lemon juice, give it a good stir and allow it to sit for about a minute.  Small {difficult to see} curds will begin to form during that minute.

Carefully pour the mixture into the cheesecloth over the bowl.  If the watery mixture doesn't immediately start flowing through the cheesecloth, you may need to pick up the corners/ends and give it a little squeeze to get the straining process going.  Set the cheesecloth back into the strainer for about an hour.  Check the cheese to be sure there is no water left.  If it needs a more time, give it another half hour--you certainly don't want watery cheese.

Transfer cheese to a small bowl and gently fold in lemon zest and basil.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper and allow to chill.  Serve with your favorite crackers and enjoy!

**There are conflicting stories from my parents about my mother's willingness to nurse me as a baby.  This is my father's version.

This is me and my favorite goat...who died...unexpectedly...at an early age.


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