Korea has been considered the last Asian frontier for westerners trying to obtain culinary comforts from home. South Korea’s relative isolation (thanks to water masses and the crazy brother to the north), low immigration rate and local pride/stubbornness in its own culture has made it difficult for expats to obtain the foods they miss from home.
That is until recently.
One of the original intents of this blog was to help expats make do with what limited foreign resources were available. That section is becoming more obsolete each year.
Goat cheese has been one of those unobtainable items I had been missing the most. The luxury department stores sold tiny lumps of Chèvre for ridiculous prices, so I never bought them. But then I noticed bottles of goat milk being sold at my local supermarket, I’m sure purely for health reasons. They even had banana goat milk, and EJ actually liked it, if you can wrap your mind around that.
Using the method I used to make mock ricotta, I found that I could easily make fresh goat cheese on my stove without much effort.
Here are the ingredients. No, actually, I’ve modified it since then. You don’t need all that. You could do it this way, where you use a bottle of goat milk, a carton of whipping cream and some fresh lemon juice. Yet I found that I don’t need the cream and I get a cleaner taste by using rice vinegar instead of lemon juice. But you can use lemon juice if you like that zing. It is great for when you want to use the cheese for a sweet application like cheesecake.
So my current recipe uses 1 bottle Goat Milk and 1 tablespoon of vinegar. It also helps to have a thermometer.
Put the goat milk in a non-aluminum saucepan and gently heat it to 180ºF/80ºC.
If you don’t have a thermometer you can sort of eyeball it. When the milk gets foamy but not boiling, it’s ready.
Turn off the heat.
Add 1 tablespoon of vinegar or 2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice and stir, stir, stir.
The proteins will seize up and tangle with each other, creating a grainy curd. See?
Strain in a cheesecloth or a very, very clean towel.
Give it some time, and this is what you end up with. Store it in a tight container in the refrigerator. I find that it gains more character after a little while, but don’t keep it for more than three weeks. It’s not a true cultured cheese. But I doubt it’ll stay that long. One thing I like to do is mix it with some herbs, like the W2,000 thyme plants from the plant shops. Put it on a toasted baguette with a tomato and you’re in heaven.
Homemade Goat Cheese
1 bottle Goat Milk
1 Tbsp. Vinegar (not white vinegar) or 2 Tbsp. fresh Lemon Juice
- Put goat milk in a non-aluminum saucepan and head gently on medium to medium high. Use a thermometer to check the temperature.
- When the temperature reaches 180ºF/80ºC the milk will get foamy. Turn off the heat.
- Stir in the vinegar or lemon juice vigorously.
- When it looks grainy, strain it into a clean cheesecloth or towel.
- Store in the refrigerator for up to three weeks.