Make my own cheese, you ask? Of course. It's easy. Yogurt cheese is the easiest cheese to make. It's mostly a waiting game. I've made herbed yogurt cheese before but it's too good and too easy not to make again and again. Little planning is required with the exception of having to wait overnight to enjoy it. So it's something that I can make any time because we usually have yogurt. And the flavor combinations are only limited by your imagination. It's a great alternative to cream cheese and mayo.
Line your strainer with two layers of cheese cloth. Place your strainer over a bowl. Put your yogurt in the lined strainer (I use my favorite, Nancy's Organic Non-Fat Plain). Cover up the yogurt with the excess cheese cloth and refrigerate. Let it go only a couple of hours or overnight. The longer it drains, the thicker it gets.
I used two cups of yogurt - give or take a bit. If you have a bigger strainer, use more yogurt. If you don't have a bigger strainer but want to strain alot of yogurt, just tie up all your yogurt in the cheese cloth and hang from a wooden spoon set over a pitcher.
The next day you have yogurt cheese. My 2 cups of yogurt yielded just a hair over eight ounces of yogurt cheese. Think of the possibilities. Simply eat it as is. Salt it. Pepper it. Mince fresh herbs and combine or shape the cheese into a log and roll in the herbs. Add crushed nuts. Add diced vegetables. Use as a dip or spread instead of cream cheese. I've made yogurt cheese with goat's milk yogurt and look out - If you love goat cheese, I suggest you try the goat's milk yogurt cheese.
For this latest batch, I blended in 4 oz. of smoked salmon. I let it chill for a couple of hours to let the flavor really sink in and it made a big difference. There was no need for additional seasoning because the salmon is flavorful and salty. This didn't last long in our house. It went onto flatbread crackers and was stuffed into celery stalks and finally just scooped up with a spoon.