Milk is a staple in my kitchen and I take its benefits and uses for granted. For this project I have maintained a focus on milk by making cottage cheese and clarified butter at home.
I have been making cheese at home for many years now. The milk was fresh from the farm and had very high fat and protein content. I decided to try it with grocery store bought milk and note any differences in the cheese making process as well as taste. The steps are described through photographs.
Once milk came to a boil I added about two tablespoons of vinegar to it. Ideally, I would use two litres of milk in a heavy pan and heat it over a very low flame. Milk would reach boiling point in an hour. The surface would have a very thick layer of fats which I would separate and refrigerate for making clarified butter. The cheese was strained through a very soft muslin and refrigerated. The cheese I made was less creamy but tasted quite good. I would give it six out of ten for flavour and texture.
As I said, the thick top layer of milk fat is used for making clarified butter. It is a lengthy and messy process but the flavour makes the effort worthwhile. For the project I used unsalted butter. My argument was that it is called clarified butter and so, there has to be a way to make it from regular butter. The following are the steps.
A small cube of butter was added to a heavy vessel and heated on very low flame. Once the butter came to a boil, light brown froth could be seen at the surface. The brown froth also had some milk solids in it and had to be strained. The resulting clarified butter was dark golden colored and smelled different from the butter I made at home. It tastes and smells good, but in a different way. This could be because of the used butter, and the small portion used.
This is a good way to visualize the number of components in milk – proteins, SNP (Solids Not Protein) and fat.