Self Sufficient Living : Make your own soft cheese.

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Posted by Jason Pullen | Posted in Self Sufficient Living : Cooking, Self Sufficient Living : Guide | Posted on 13-01-2012

If you know me, or indeed have met me, even for a short time, you will know that I love cheese,  and love may not be a strong enough word. My name at work use to be mighty mouse, due to me bringing in wacky and often smelly cheeses, I must have been so popular.
Here is a quick guide to making your own soft cheese. Another tiny step to living more self sufficiently.

All you need is some milk, preferably organic whole milk, a large pan, some muslin and lemon juice.

Bring the milk to a low simmer, take it off the heat, squirt in some lemon and stir. The milk should start to curdle, if it doesn’t bung in a little more lemon.
Scoop out the curd with a slatted spoon and place it into the muslin. Once you have it all, tie off the muslin with a piece of string and hang overnight. Make sure you hang it over a container of some sort, to catch the whey that will drain from your cheese.
In the morning open up your muslin and spread out your cheese on the worktop. This cheese is a little bland but you can give it some vavooom with some chives, garlic, salt and pepper.
Note : Don’t throw out the whey after you have separated it from the curds, as it can be used to make soda bread.

Let me know how you get on and if you have any flavour tips, I’ll be happy to try them out!

Mighty Mouse

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So many tomatoes! Time to start cooking.

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Posted by Jason Pullen | Posted in Self Sufficient Living : Cooking, Self Sufficient Living : Guide | Posted on 26-09-2011

Lots of tomatoes... Time to start cooking

As your can see we have a slight glut of tomatoes. So in celebration of tomato pasta for dinner tonight, here is the recipe for it.

What you need

  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • fresh chillies
  • 10 large tomatoes (or so!)
  • 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
  • Bunch of basil leaves, torn into small pieces
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • Grated Parmesan cheese, to serve

What to do and how to do it.

  • Heat the oil in a saucepan and gently cook the onion and garlic until soft and golden.
  • Cut and stir in the tomatoes. I like to leave the skins on but you can easily peel them if you pop them in boiling water for a couple of minutes.
  • Cut some fresh chillies and add balsamic vinegar
  • Bring to a simmer and cook slowly for 40 minutes.
  • Stir in the basil and season with salt and pepper. This can be left chunky or blended in a food processor for a smooth sauce.
  • Serve spooned over cooked pasta with Parmesan cheese.

Enjoy.

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