One of the characteristic features of farmer cheese is that it is unaged. In practical terms, this means that it is ready to eat as soon as it has dried. Aged cheeses often have sharper, more developed flavors, but they take a long time to ripen; farmer varieties are notoriously mild, but typically very pleasing.
Aaron Dykes and Melissa Melton
You know those packages of cheese or gallons of milk sold at the average American grocery store with the little icon of a nice, inviting red barn on them that just screams ALL NATURAL at you?
One wistful glance and you can almost picture the little old lady churning your butter there by hand.
Well, in reality, this is an example of little American farm where your cheese actually comes from:
Forget the barn: its giant, industrial factories with barbed wire around them (to keep the cheese from escaping?).
As we sat filming this place for a solid 15 minutes, it was astounding to watch just how many tanker trucks came in and out of there in such a short span of time. Upon further research, we found out that nearly 4 billion pounds of milk and almost 400 million pounds of cheese are processed a year in just this …
Making farmer’s cheese is relatively simple as all that is usually needed is milk, some sort of acid or starter, and active rennet, which is a bacterial culture. Rennet is not strictly required, but usually speeds the process. Once the acid and rennet begin to interact with the milk, the milk separates into curds, which are solids, and whey, which is a thick liquid. Farmer cheese is made only from the curds. These are filtered out, then pressed into a mold or rolled into a tight lump and squeezed to remove excess moisture.
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