Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Dairy Magic

I recently had the opportunity to take a class called Dairy Magic from Chris at Lost Arts Kitchen in which a small group of students met in her home kitchen to learn the secrets of making yogurt, mozzarella, and cream cheese. Classes at Lost Arts Kitchen focus on teaching basic cooking skills to those looking to incorporate slow food traditions into modern life.
I've made mozzarella before but my results aren't always consistent. I haven't made yogurt but I know homemade is delicious. And home made cream cheese sounded absolutely heavenly. I got a few friends together and we all signed up to spend an evening in the kitchen.

Chris gave us a general introduction to the properties of different types of milks and talked about different specialty supplies. Then we began heating milk, straining, scooping, pouring, and tasting. I enjoyed the class immensely but my favorite part was, unsurprisingly, the part at the end where we got to sample our fresh mozzarella on Chris' still-warm-from-the-oven bread with a selection of tasty chutneys. I brought home a stack of recipes, and samples of each thing we made. The cream cheese was absolutely heavenly on Tastebud bagels the next morning.
I've already ordered one of the recommended books and will begin tracking down the culture for the cream cheese soon as that is something I particularly want to make again, perhaps for this year's Shavuot blintzes.

I can't wait to see what's up next on the class schedule for Lost Arts kitchen. I really enjoyed my first ever cooking class and hope to return soon.


Lisa said...

Kookoolan Farms in Yamhill has a full selection of cheesemaking cultures and a decent selection of cheesemaking supplies and books, if you are out for driving up in that direction. That's where we purchase our real milk and the farmers are very nice, too.

Magpie Ima said...

Hi Lisa--I've heard that Kookoolan Farms will bring cheese making supplies to their booth at the Hillsdale Farmers market which is still a hike for me but lots closer than Yamhill.

Lisa said...

Oh, I forgot about that, since I've never been to the Hillsdale Farmers market. Just check with them, because I think they are cutting down their farmers market schedule this year due to rearranging their chicken raising techniques.

They are really wonderful folks. We've spent a good amount of time with them both professionally and socially.

(A funny sidenote: my word verification is "egged", how apropos for a food blog!)

Chris said...

That is some good cream cheese. Thanks again for signing up for a class and bringing along C, C, & E. I really enjoyed having you all there that night.

And my word verification is "bakedom," which is where I feel I've been the last couple days--started a sourdough starter Sunday, baked my first challah Monday (Annabel has been singing my praises for this one), baked a cracked wheat loaf Tuesday...

Ali said...

So glad it met your expectations! Let me know when the next opportunity comes up--I'd love to try these classes with you all next time.