How to Make Whey and Cream Cheese the Old Fashioned Way

wheycreamcheese

Whey. The Old Fashioned Whey!

Get it??

I’m a sucker for a play on words 😉

You can use whey in soaking beans and grains. You can also use whey as the starter culture to lacto-ferment foods such as sauerkraut, beet kvass, kimchi, salsa, carrots, etc.

I’ve also read via Nourishing Traditions that you can put a tablespoon of whey in a little bit of water and drink it to soothe a tummy ache. I’ll have to try that next time.

I learn so much when I blog.

The instructions that I am going to give you are to make whey from yogurt. You can also make whey from your milk (go RAW!) but of course you must let your milk sit on the counter covered for 3-4 days until it separates before you can begin your whey/cream cheese making.

The cream cheese you will get from this process will not be like the cream cheese in the store. It may be a little less creamy. I find that if I add salt to it, it is delicious!

The process using yogurt will give you whey and subsequently cream cheese as you are separating the two substances.

You can also find instructions on this process on page 87 of your handy-dandy copy of Nourishing Traditions.

Here is what you need:

Yogurt– 1 lb. preferably made from raw milk or whole milk yogurt with no additives from the store.

(Nourishing Traditions says to use 2 qts. but I find that is too much at one time for me.)

Cheesecloth 

Mesh Strainer

Large Mixing Bowl and/or jar

Cupboard or wooden spoon to hang your yogurt on to elevate and increase drippage

Glass container– to store whey. I use a mason jar.

Covered container- to store cream cheese.

The process:

1. Line your strainer with cheesecloth and place in a large mixing bowl to separate whey from cream cheese. A large portion of the separation happens with this step. 

If you are using thick yogurt or greek yogurt you can skip step number one since you will need a little more gravity to separate to begin with. 

2. To continue separation, tie the cheesecloth around the milk solids and attach to a wooden spoon or cupboard (somewhere where it can be elevated and allowed to drip with more gravitational pull)

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3. Allow all the drippage possible. When drippage is complete your whey and cream cheese is ready. I usually let mine drip overnight. 

4. Transfer whey to a glass container and store in your refrigerator. Whey can be kept for 6 months refrigerated. 

5. Salt cream cheese to taste and transfer to a covered container and store in you refrigerator for up to 1 month. 

Viola!

Enjoy your oh-so-useful whey and cream cheese! And you probably have some yogurt left over! Three foods from one. Genius.

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Potato sausages are making my heart sing.

As we speak I am cooking up some potato sausages that I actually had to cut apart from eachother. Real, honest to goodness, homemade sausages cased in real intestine! They are steaming on my stove right now and they smell so good.

Is it weird to be excited about the casing on your sausages?

The best part about these sausages is that my dad made them! In his home! With a meat grinder! Using his own elk meat!

Doesn’t that just make you want to don an apron, pick up a chicken, twirl around and sing like Cinderella out your kitchen window complete with a pie cooling in the window?? No?

Yeah, me either.

Last weekend I visited my Dad. We made a delicious dinner and rhubarb strawberry pies with the overgrown rhubarb picked from his yard.

He showed me the latest happenings in his garden and his plans for the mossy appletree in his yard. He let me take the food from his fridge that was going to go bad since he is going to be in Seattle working on a boat this week. This included two packages of wild Alaskan smoked salmon. SCORE!

And yes, I ate it all already. It was all mine since I’m the only real fish eater in my house.

Which is weird because one would think my husband, a manly-Finnish man from a small town on the Columbia River whose dad, grandpa, and self worked in the fishing industry would be a fish lover. But, no. I am the one that must eat all the fish. Poor me 😉

When I spend time with my Dad like this it becomes clear how I have come to be the person that I am. This happens when I am with my mom too but alas, I did not get to see my mom last weekend (tear…)

My Dad is someone I would describe as charismatic, quirky, hard-working, curious, and completely capable of all things. He has the largest hands you will ever see in your life. And his fingers are all wacked-out from breaking them and not getting them properly set. He has a hot temper. He cares about this country. He fears God. He loves to cook and always has. His weakness is chocolate chips cookies. He’s perfected his recipe. It’s dangerous. He hunts, fishes, grows a garden, can fix anything, can build anything, and always has a new adventure to talk about. Since high school he has been a commercial fisherman who went on to ultimately live his dream when he bought his very own fishing vessel, Dreamland, and became it’s hard-working Captain for years to come.

My dad's hands. Hand model?

My dad’s hands. Hand model?

He used to have a shirt that said “At the mention of my name, fish tremble.” Bah ha!

And this year he will go to Alaska for the 23484987th time.

This is not to say that I am as hard-working and capable as my dad because the Lord knows I am not movin’  and shakin’ at the pace of my Dad. (Which by the way, makes me feel very lame because for goodness sakes I am 27 years younger.)

All I’m sayin’ is it’s no wonder I’m such a cool person. Ha ha ha…I’m totally kidding.

But seriously, it’s no wonder that I get excited about the casing on my Dad’s homemade potato sausages. It’s no wonder I feel my hot temper rise when I read articles and learn about all the destruction of freedom going on in this country. It’s no wonder I daydream all day about our future homesteading goals and living off the land. And it’s no wonder I have the fear of God always with me.

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I do wonder though, why I have such a serious case of sea-sickness when I so much as watch a boat in a movie on the ocean. That doesn’t fit the pattern.

This is not even to mention all of the things that make me like my Mom. I could go on about our poodle fetish (Standard Poodles, to be exact) and relentless need to put a bow on everything given as a gift. (Is not a gift without a bow, right!? Back me up here!)

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I wanted to talk about sausages but this turned into a post about my dear ol’ Dad.

Thank you blog for allowing my thoughts to wander aimlessly.

I love my Dad. And I love my Mom. And I love these potato sausages.

My parents camping. I'm here too but you can't see me because I'm in the womb ;)

My parents camping. I’m here too but you can’t see me because I’m in the womb 😉