Please post - not sure about making it at this point in time but I like to keep ideas on file
Is this made from cow or goats milk?
The recipe calls for cow or goat milk, either fresh or store bought.
I've only made it with fresh goat milk. And no, I don't like the goaty-ness that some people like about some goat cheese. (Not all goat cheese is goaty, just depends.)
This cheese can be made with vinegar or lemon juice, I prefer lemon juice, which does not come through in the finished product. Do not use lime juice unless you really like the taste of lime in your cheeses.....ask me how I know this. Queso Blanco/Panir
4 quarts whole milk
1/4 cup white vinegar
1/4 to 1/2 cup lemon juice (bottled is ok)
1. Warm milk in large stainless steel pot (not aluminum) over medium heat to 180 degrees F, stirring gently to prevent scorching. Once at 180, reduce heat to low for a few minutes (to allow entire gallon to reach temperature evenly) then remove from heat.
2. Add vinegar (or lemon juice) slowly while stirring. Continue stirring until there is a clear separation and the solids rise to the top. (Will be white and look clumpy or stringy, while the liquids will be somewhat clearish.) If there is not clear separation within 10 minutes, add another 1/8 to 1/4 cup vinegar (or lemon juice) and continue stirring.
3. Pour contents into a cloth lined colander (I have used clean cotton, cheese cloth, and butter muslin, all work fine) and let drain. Gather the corners of the cloth and tie together like a bag and hang for several hours.
(Hang time depends on the texture you like. See my notes below)
4. Unwrap, flavor as desired, and store in a covered bowl in the fridge.
Easy peasy lemon squeezey....literally.
Here is a Queso Blanco recipe with pics so you know what the separation looks like. Queso Blanco
My own notes:
- I aim to get a temp between 180 to 183. Stay under 185.
- With fresh goat milk the curds (solids) separate very
- I drain the pot through the colander as noted above, but instead of letting it go down the drain I catch it in another pot. This is the whey portion. It is full of nutrients still and is good for cooking with and baking with. Or, my chickens love it. It also adds nutrients to a compost heap if you are not inclined to use it for cooking and don¡¯t have chickens.
- Draining and hanging- Most recipes call for draining or hanging for a few hours, but I have found my separation is so good with lemon juice and if I drain it more than a few minutes, it becomes dry and crumbly much quicker.
- Flavors - This cheese will take up just about any flavor you might like in cheese or cheese dishes. As soon as I remove it from the cloth and it is still warm, I drizzle mine with a little olive oil and a sprinkle of salt and work it in. Then I might add sun dried tomatoes, a little garlic and herbs. The flavor is up to you, but olive oil helps incorporate and meld the flavors.
Here is an excerpt from a goat dairy website that tells how to use Panir like tofu - http://fiascofarm.com/dairy/quesoblanco.htm
"Now that you have this rubbery ball of cheese, what do you do with it? Panir is like tofu: it will take on the flavor of the food it is cooked with. Just cut it into bite-sized cubes and throw it into chili or spaghetti. You can cook the noodles in the leftover whey. You will need to cook them a little longer than usual; test to make sure they're done to your liking. I love pasta cooked in whey. I always save whey just for this purpose. Try serving your chili over vermicelli cooked in whey, topped with a sprinkle of cheese, some sprouts and a dollop of yogurt (goat of course).
You could use Panir as a meat extender/replacement. Since we are vegetarian, we use a lot of Panir. When you make taco meat, I cut it up in tiny cubes and simmer it with the meat for about an hour. I make "chick'n a la king" using cubes of Panir instead of meat. A quick dinner is mac'n cheese, made from a box, but also add onions, Panir cubes, peas and use buttermilk in place of regular milk.
You can marinade the Panir and throw it on top of salads or use it in stir-fry. Panir is really in its element when used in curry. Serve the curry over rice cooked with whey instead of water and add a handful of raisins and a clove to the rice as well, to make it really authentic.
There are endless uses for Panir, so make some of this quick and easy cheese and experiment for yourself."