Welcome, fellow food enthusiasts, to a tantalizing journey through the world of feta cheese! As a professional chef, I have had the pleasure of working with numerous ingredients, but there is something truly special about this beloved Greek treasure. Known for its crumbly texture, tangy flavor, and versatility in various culinary creations, feta cheese has captured the hearts and taste buds of people around the globe. Join me as we explore the rich history, the unique craftsmanship, and the endless possibilities that feta cheese brings to our plates. From traditional Greek salads to innovative fusion dishes, get ready to discover the irresistible allure of feta cheese and unlock the secrets behind its culinary magic. Whether you’re a connoisseur or a curious beginner, prepare to be whisked away into a world of savory delights – feta cheese awaits!

The Perfectly Creamy and Tangy Feta Cheese Recipe

Attention all cheese lovers! Are you ready to elevate your culinary skills and make your own feta cheese from scratch? This simple yet exquisite recipe will guide you step-by-step to create the perfect creamy and tangy feta cheese. Whether you’re a seasoned chef or a beginner in the kitchen, get ready to impress your friends and family with this homemade delicacy. Let’s dive in!

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups of whole milk
  • 2 cups of goat’s milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon of mesophilic starter culture
  • 1/4 teaspoon of liquid calcium chloride (if using pasteurized milk)
  • 1/4 teaspoon of liquid animal rennet
  • 1 tablespoon of cheese salt
  • Cheese mat or bamboo sushi rolling mat

General Information:

  • Making Difficulty: Moderate
  • Preparation Time: 30 minutes
  • Cooking Time: 6-8 hours
  • Makes: Approximately 1 pound of feta cheese

Instructions:

Step 1: Preparing the Milk

In a large pot, mix the whole milk and goat’s milk together. Gently heat the mixture over medium heat until it reaches a temperature of 90°F (32°C). Once it reaches the desired temperature, remove it from the heat.

Sprinkle the mesophilic starter culture over the milk and let it rehydrate for 1-2 minutes. Stir the mixture gently for about 1 minute to ensure even distribution of the culture.

Step 2: Ripening the Milk

Cover the pot with a lid and let the milk ripen for 1 hour at room temperature. This will allow the cultures to work their magic and develop the characteristic flavors of feta cheese.

During this time, avoid disturbing the pot or changing its temperature. Simply let the milk rest and allow nature to take its course.

Step 3: Coagulating the Milk

If you’re using pasteurized milk, this step is crucial to ensure proper coagulation. Dilute the liquid calcium chloride in 1/4 cup of non-chlorinated water and add it to the milk, stirring gently for 1 minute.

Next, dilute the liquid animal rennet in 1/4 cup of non-chlorinated water and add it to the milk. Stir it gently in an up-and-down motion for 1 minute to distribute the rennet evenly.

Step 4: Cutting and Cooking the Curds

Allow the milk to sit undisturbed for 1 hour. During this time, the curds will form a solid mass.

After 1 hour, cut the curds into 1/2-inch cubes using a long knife. Make sure to cut all the way to the bottom of the pot.

Gently stir the curds for 10-15 minutes while gradually increasing the heat to 105°F (40°C). This will help expel more whey from the curds, resulting in a firmer texture.

Step 5: Draining and Salting the Curds

Line a colander with cheesecloth or a clean kitchen towel, and place it over a large bowl or in the sink.

Using a slotted spoon or a skimmer, carefully transfer the curds to the lined colander. Allow the whey to drain out for 5-10 minutes.

Once the excess whey has drained, sprinkle the cheese salt evenly over the curds. Gently toss the curds to distribute the salt.

Step 6: Pressing the Cheese

Transfer the curds, still inside the cheesecloth, to a cheese mat or a bamboo sushi rolling mat.

Place a weight on top of the cheese, such as a heavy pot or a cheese press, and let it sit at room temperature for 6-8 hours. This will help expel more whey and create the signature texture of feta cheese.

Step 7: Aging the Feta Cheese

Remove the weight from the cheese and carefully unwrap the cheesecloth. The cheese should now be firm and ready to age.

Place the cheese in a container and cover it with a brine solution made of 1 cup of non-chlorinated water and 2 tablespoons of cheese salt. Make sure the cheese is completely submerged in the brine.

Seal the container and refrigerate it for at least 24 hours before enjoying your homemade feta cheese. The longer you let it age, the tangier and more flavorful it will become.

And there you have it, your very own homemade feta cheese ready to be savored! Use it to add a burst of flavor to salads, crumble it over roasted vegetables, or enjoy it on its own with a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkle of freshly ground black pepper. The possibilities are endless! So gather your ingredients, put on your apron, and embark on this delightful cheese-making adventure. Your taste buds will thank you. Enjoy!

feta cheese

Important things to keep in mind: Crafting the Perfect Feta Cheese

Creating your own feta cheese at home is a delightful endeavour that brings a touch of authenticity and sophistication to your culinary repertoire. Whether you’re an experienced cheese-maker or a curious novice, there are a few important factors to consider in order to achieve that perfect balance of tanginess, creaminess, and crumble. From selecting the milk to the ripening process, here are some crucial elements to keep in mind when embarking on your feta cheese-making journey.

1. The Power of Fresh Milk

The foundation of any great feta cheese lies in the milk you choose. Opting for fresh, high-quality goat’s or sheep’s milk will impart a rich and distinctive flavor to the final product. The enzymes and bacteria naturally present in raw milk contribute to the development of complex flavors during the cheese-making process. However, be aware that using raw milk carries a higher risk of foodborne illnesses, so it’s essential to handle and store it with utmost care to ensure safety.

2. Temperature Makes the Difference

Temperature control is crucial throughout the cheese-making process to achieve the desired texture and taste. To encourage the growth of beneficial bacteria and discourage the growth of harmful ones, it’s important to maintain a consistently warm temperature. Follow the specific instructions for the feta cheese recipe you’re using, but as a general rule, aim for a temperature range of 70 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit during the initial stages of fermentation. A simple thermometer can be an invaluable tool to ensure your cheese is developing under the right conditions.

3. Salt: A Balancing Act

The saltiness of feta cheese is one of its most distinctive characteristics. However, finding the perfect balance can be a culinary tightrope walk. Too little salt, and the cheese may lack the characteristic tanginess and microbial balance. Too much, and the salt can overpower the delicate flavors of the curds. It’s essential to follow the recommended salt-to-milk ratio in your feta cheese recipe, but also trust your taste buds. Consider the saltiness of the milk itself and the desired intensity of the final product, adjusting the amount of salt accordingly.

4. Patiently Wait for Perfection

While the temptation to indulge in your freshly made feta cheese may be strong, it’s crucial to exercise patience and allow it to ripen for the optimal time. The aging process allows the flavors to develop fully and the texture to mature into the crumbly goodness that defines feta cheese. Typically, feta cheese is aged for at least two to three months, but some recipes may call for shorter or longer aging periods. Keep in mind that the cheese will continue to evolve in flavor and texture even after the initial ripening period, so experimenting with different aging times can lead to delightful variations.

By considering these key elements, you’re well on your way to creating a homemade feta cheese that rivals those found in the finest Greek and Mediterranean delis. Embrace the artistry of cheese-making, and with each batch, you’ll refine your technique and develop a deeper appreciation for this timeless culinary delight.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are you a fan of tangy and savory cheese? Look no further than feta cheese, a beloved ingredient in Mediterranean cuisine. Here are answers to some commonly asked questions about feta cheese.

1. How is feta cheese made?

Feta cheese is traditionally made from sheep’s milk or a mixture of sheep’s and goat’s milk. The milk is curdled and left to set overnight. The curds are then cut into small pieces, drained, and placed in brine for several weeks to develop its distinct flavor and texture. This process creates the crumbly yet creamy consistency that feta cheese is known for.

Today, feta cheese is also produced using cow’s milk or a combination of cow’s and goat’s milk. However, only cheese made in Greece can carry the official designation of “feta.”

2. How should I store feta cheese?

Feta cheese should be stored properly to maintain its freshness and prevent spoilage. The best way to store feta cheese is by keeping it in brine or a solution of saltwater. This helps preserve its flavor and texture. Make sure to keep the cheese submerged in the brine at all times.

If your feta cheese comes wrapped in plastic, it is advisable to transfer it to an airtight container filled with brine or saltwater. Store the container in the refrigerator and use the cheese within a week or two for the best quality.

3. Can I freeze feta cheese?

While it is possible to freeze feta cheese, the texture may change once thawed. Freezing can make the cheese become crumbly and less creamy. If you do decide to freeze feta cheese, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap or place it in an airtight container. Label it with the date and use it within three months for optimal flavor.

It’s worth noting that freezing works better for feta cheese intended for cooking rather than for direct consumption, as the texture change may be less noticeable when incorporated into dishes.

4. How can I use feta cheese in recipes?

Feta cheese is incredibly versatile and can be used in a variety of dishes. Here are a few popular ways to use feta cheese:

– Crumble it over salads for a tangy kick.

– Stuff it into chicken or lamb burgers for an extra burst of flavor.

– Add it to omelets or scrambled eggs for a creamy and savory twist.

– Use it as a topping for roasted vegetables or baked potatoes.

– Incorporate it into spanakopita, a Greek spinach and feta pastry.

Feel free to experiment and get creative with this delicious cheese!

5. Is feta cheese lactose-free?

Feta cheese is known for its lower lactose content compared to other types of cheese. The fermentation process involved in making feta cheese reduces lactose levels, making it easier to digest for those with lactose intolerance.

However, it’s important to note that feta cheese still contains some lactose, so individuals with severe lactose intolerance should exercise caution. It’s always a good idea to consult with a healthcare professional if you have specific dietary concerns.

How Authentic Feta Cheese Is Made In Greece | Regional Eats


In conclusion, feta cheese is a versatile and delicious ingredient that adds a unique and tangy flavor to a wide range of dishes. From Greek salads to savory pastries, feta cheese is a staple in Mediterranean cuisine and beyond. Its crumbly texture and bold taste make it an excellent choice for both cooking and garnishing. Whether you’re a professional chef or a home cook, incorporating feta cheese into your recipes is sure to elevate your culinary creations to new heights. So, get creative in the kitchen and let the magic of feta cheese inspire your next culinary masterpiece!