It is relatively simple to make from milk, no special equipment or ingredients are needed, yet it will definitely impress whomever you serve it to. Fromage Blanc can be made in a variety of textures. It can be made with low fat milk if you so desire, and it can be a dessert cheese like that above or a comfort food like the creamy herb cheese I made here.
The preparation is so easy, here is how:
You will need-
1 qt.milk, raw or store bought but make sure it is not ultra pasteurized (regular pasteurization is fine)
1 cup buttermilk
11/2 tbls. strained juice from fresh lemons or limes
1/2 tsp salt, I prefer pink salt
a stainless steel or enamel pot to hold 1.5 qt or more
a plastic or enamel colander
cheese cloth or lint free flour sack cloth
large glass bowl
slotted spoon, plastic or wooden
cheese paper or waxed paper
Add milk to your pot, double the recipe if you want to do both cheeses pictured here.
Slowly warm the milk, don't let it burn. Just before it reaches a boil, add the buttermilk and strained lemon or lime juice, give one or two light stirs to blend. Reduce heat to warm for about five minutes. Turn heat off and leave it alone for another 10 minutes. You will see the curds begin to form and the watery whey separate. Add salt. If you are doing an herb cheese add the herbs at this point.
Place the colander in the large glass bowl. Lay the cheese cloth double thickness, or single thickness flour sack cloth, in the colander.With your slotted spoon, gently lift the curds out of the pot. If the pot is small enough to handle you can just pour the contents right into the colander. The whey will drain through the cloth, leaving the curd behind. Discard the whey. Gently squeeze the curd, not too hard or it will be forced through the cloth as well. I then hang the cloth over the bowl for about an hour, occasionally walking past and giving the curds a gentle squeeze.
If you use the waxed paper I suggest shaping the cheese with your hands and placing it in a large glass or crockery bowl so it has some air space. Cheese, even soft cheese, must breathe.
After the cheese has set up, I remove it from the 'mold' and it is ready to eat.
For the dessert cheese,using a balsamic reduction adds a special dimension to the flavor.