Quark is a fresh cultured dairy product common to German speaking countries, northern Europe, and the Netherlands. It’s a soft curd cheese, similar to cottage cheese. Different varieties of quark are used in a wide variety of dishes. It may be used as a spread, a base for desserts, or as a sour-cream alternative.

MAKES APPROXIMATELY 400G

Homemade Quark Cheese Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1L full cream milk (homogenised) or full cream UHT milk.
  • 5 drops (or 0.3ml) Calcium Chloride.
  • A tiny pinch (or ½ ‘drop’ spoon) Mesophilic Starter Culture.
  • 0.5ml liquid or 1/16th tablet rennet diluted in 15ml of cool, non-chlorinated water (boiled and cooled).
  • Cream (optional).
  • Salt and herbs to taste.

Instructions

    CULTURING:
  1. Measure out 15ml of cool, non-chlorinated water and stir in the rennet.
  2. Pour the milk into a saucepan and stir the calcium chloride into the cold milk.
  3. Warm the milk to 31°C whilst stirring constantly to prevent scalding.
  4. Remove the saucepan from the heat and stir in the mesophilic starter culture. Allow the starter culture to rehydrate for one minute, then stir it through the milk.
  5. Add the diluted rennet and stir it through for 15 seconds, then stop stirring immediately.
  6. Cover the saucepan and and let it sit undisturbed in a warm spot (e.g. in an oven on ‘warm’ setting, or the kitchen sink with warm water) for 16 hours, or until the curd has set into a custard-like consistency. This may take up to 24 hours if the milk is not kept warm enough.
  7. DRAINING THE CURD:
  8. Transfer the curd into a double layered cheese cloth lined colander and drain for 12-24 hours in the fridge, or until the quark reaches a desirable thickness. The longer you drain, the thicker the cheese will become.
  9. FINISHING:
  10. You may wish to finish the quark by adding a small amount of cream for a richer consistency, and/or herbs and salt to taste.
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