Brewing beer in your basement; growing veggies and herbs; learning to butcher-- homesteading is the it-child of culinaryexperimentation. Everyone wants to give it a try and there’s a surprisingly simple way to get started: make your own cheese!
Based on thousands of years of cheesemaking wisdom, the approach is simple: heat milk, add coagulant, drain, salt and press. Simplified further with the guidance of Claudia Lucero, anyone with a hot plate can take on this beloved food. One Hour Cheese: Ricotta, Mozzarella, Chevre, Paneer--Even Burrata. Fresh and Simple Cheeses You Can Make in an Hour or Less! ($14.95) is a fully illustrated, easy-to-follow guide, cookbook, and hostess manual. Through step-by-step instructions and photos, Lucero teaches readers how to make 16 cheeses– each with endless variations, no complex instructions, no hard-to-find ingredients, and no excessive prep time. Start with favorites like Ricotta and Chevre and then veer to the more exotic with Paneer and Burrata, and finally customize using a wide range of flavorings from herbs to nutmeg to lemon juice. The possibilities are endless and the results delicious.
But the fun doesn’t stop there! While each cheese can be enjoyed on its own, it can also be incorporated into different meals and used in the most unique ways. Pizza, lasagna, cheesecake and the like are classic options, but Lucero will show you more inventive ways to use each cheese, including fresh Squeaky “Pasta” Primavera, gooey Mozzarella Kebabs, and irresistible Grill Cheese Sammies, where the cheese is the bread. Information on ingredients, flavor pairings, troubleshooting, and basic tips and techniques are also included– along with how to make the perfect cheese platter, cocktail recipes, and 3 bonus DIY dairy essentials every aspiring homesteader should know: yogurt, butter, and ghee.
Claudia Lucero is the entrepreneur behind UrbanCheesecraft.com and DIY Cheese Kits, which she sells through Etsy, specialty food shops, and select Whole Foods stores. She also developed the home cheesemaking kits for Williams-Sonoma’s Agrarian product line. She lives in Portland, Oregon.
Please join us at the Book Passage Cafe for a one- hour demonstration and tasting of Claudia Lucero's easy and delicious cheese!
It's a DIY cook's dream come true: It's pizza night, and you've made not only the crust and sauce but the mozzarella, too. Or you're whipping up quesadillas for a snack, using your homemade Triple Pepper Hack. Or the dinner party's in high gear and out comes the cheese plate--and yes, you've made all the cheeses on it. Even better--you made them all earlier that day.