This cheese (Ziergerkase) originated in Germany. It may be eaten fresh or aged for several weeks.
Yield: About 1 pound
2 gallons fresh whey, no more than 3 hours old
1 quart whole milk, for increased yield (optional)
¼ cup vinegar (I like apple cider)
1 quart water
1 quart red wine
¼ cup cheese salt
1 Pour the whey into a large pot. Add the milk, if desired. Heat the mixture to 200°F.
2 Slowly add the vinegar. Turn off the heat.
3 Allow the mixture to set for 10 minutes. You will see white flakes of protein floating in it.
4 Carefully pour the mixture into a colander lined with butter muslin and allow it to drain.
5 When the muslin is cool enough to handle, tie the corners into a knot and hang the bag over the sink to drain for several hours, or until the curds stop dripping whey. Allow the curds to cool.
6 Line a 1-pound cheese mold with butter muslin. Add the curds and press at 20 pounds of pressure for 24 hours.
7 Remove the cheese from the press and gently peel away the cheesecloth.
8 In a large bowl, combine the water, wine, and salt; add the herbs, if desired. Add the cheese and cover. Place the bowl in the refrigerator for 4 days and turn the cheese twice a day.
9 Remove the cheese from the soaking liquid. Drain on paper towels and cover with cheese wrap. The cheese may be eaten fresh or aged for several weeks in the refrigerator before serving. It will keep for 3–4 weeks.
Excerpted from Home Cheesemaking. © Ricki Carroll. Used with Permission of Storey Publishing.
This original article initially appeared in the Winter 2015/16 issue of City Style and Living Magazine.