“I received a gift card to offset the expense of my ingredients. By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by the California Milk Advisory Board and am eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. I was not compensated for my time.”
Today I’m sharing my recipe for homemade yogurt cheese with you. TheRecipeRedux and the California Milk Advisory Board are sponsoring a contest to celebrate the theme “dairy good”, and have asked the members of TheRecipeRedux (this includes me) to come up with a lightened version of a favorite recipe using real California milk and cheese products.
Homemade yogurt cheese is simple to make and it’s a great way to add flavor to fruit, veggie sticks, breakfast toast, sandwiches, bruschetta, and whatever else you can think of. Occasionally, my kids love getting bagels from the corner bagel shop. Thirteen bagels come in a bucket along 2 containers of flavored cream cheese—your choice of flavors. The prepared cream cheese spreads taste good, but they have too much added sugar, and the cream cheese spreads are loaded with more saturated fat than I want for myself and for my family. Homemade yogurt cheese is less sweet and has only about ¼ the saturated fat than cream cheese ounce per ounce; and it has less than half the calories. So to eat healthy you can make your own yogurt cheese using one of your favorite yogurt brands (mine are Brown Cow Farms and Straus Family Creamery), and then buy the bucket of bagels minus the cream cheese.
For my yogurt cheese I bought 3 quarts of California yogurt of different flavors; Brown Cow Maple, Brown Cow Vanilla, and Straus Lowfat Organic. We enjoyed eating half the yogurt from each container and I used the other half of each container to make 3 different flavors of cheese. You can also add your own flavorings to the cheese, as I did with the Strauss Plain Organic; I added garlic, parsley, salt and chives. You might want to add fresh fruit to the vanilla and maple flavors. It’s all up to you and your tastebuds. Enjoy!
Related Article: Yogurt is a Winning Healthy Food Choice
Reference: YouTube Video
I recommend starting to strain the yogurt about noon and then placing the strained yogurt into the molds around 10:00 p.m. They will be ready to unmold in the morning. When I refer to a strip of cheese cloth it is understood that it is two pieces —this is the way they are made. See below **Notes for materials needed.
- 3 pints California yogurt of different flavors
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 2 teaspoons finely chopped parsley
- 1 tablespoon minced chives
- pinch of salt
- 1 tablespoon chopped chives
- 1 vanilla bean
- 1 teaspoon maple syrup
- Place the strainer over or in a large bowl. Lay a 17 inch strip cheese cloth in the sieve with with edges hanging over the sides of the sieve. Place a second strip in the sieve crossing the first piece on the perpendicular.
- Place two cups of yogurt in the sieve.
- Gather up the edges of the cheese cloth and tie it closed with a rubber band, as close to you yogurt as you can go.
- Pass the chopstick through the rubber band and place the chop stick and dangling yogurt bag the top to a jar or tall bowl to drain. Discard the whey, or liquid, that strains through the bag.
- After eight to ten hours remove the bag from the stick.
- Prepare (3) 1-cup molds by lining each one with a piece of cheese cloth about 9 inches long.
- Remove the strained plain yogurt from the bag and mix the yogurt with the garlic, parsley and pinch of salt.
- Place the yogurt in the mold.
- After spooning the strained yogurt into each of the molds top each with a small piece of plastic. Leave the cheesecloth flaps open and then place the card board cut out on top of the plastic.
- Place a can on top of the cardboard to act as a weight.
- Next morning or afternoon unmold the cheese and garnish.
**Notes - you will need: 2 packages of cheesecloth (2 yards each pack), a sieve, 3 containers for draining,3 rubber bands or string, 3 chopsticks or long pencils, 3 pieces of cardboard cut to the size of the mold (for pressing), and 3 cans (for weights).