Sunday, 4 July 2010

Homemade Chive and Peppadew Cheese: JessiKaas!

Homemade cheese! And it tastes good! I feel so chuffed with myself! Okay, enough exclamation marks already. Making cheese sounds hard, people look at you in awe upon hearing that the tasty cheese is your own creation but really the process is quite simple; all that you need is a little bit of patience and something heavy. (The patience is for waiting while the milk boils and the curds drain and the heavy object is to compress the curds to get all the whey out.) The cheese has the texture of cream cheese, it is tasty spread on bread and a great conversation topic in a crowd!

For the non-Afrikaans readers, "kaas" is Afrikaans for "cheese", and my name is Jessica so I cleverly combined the two to create JessiKaas! (Creative genius am I right? Right? Yes I'm here all week folks. *ba da dum*)

Homemade Chive and Peppadew Cheese aka JessiKaas
Makes about 1 cup of cheese

  • 1 litre Full Cream Milk
  • 250ml Buttermilk
  • Chopped Chives to taste
  • Chopped Peppadews to taste
  • Salt (plain or flavoured) to taste
  • Cheesecloth

  1. Heat the milk in a saucepan until it just starts boiling.
  2. Remove from the heat and stir in the buttermilk. White clumps should start forming, this is the curds. The liquid is the whey, it should become clearer as more curds form.
  3. Leave for about 10 minutes for the curds and whey to fully separate.
  4. Line a colander with cheesecloth and pour in the curds and whey. Rinse the curds with water for a few minutes to remove all of the whey.
  5. Knot the cheesecloth with the curds and place under a heavy object for an hour. I placed the cheesecloth under a cutting board and weighed it down with a box containing six full wine bottles for this step.
  6. Remove the curds and place in a mixing bowl. Work the curds (knead) with your hands until the texture changes from rubbery to creamy and smooth. This takes about 5 minutes.
  7. Add flavoring to taste, place the cheese in an airtight container and refrigerate.


  1. You've inspired me - I may even try to make this... Now, to find something heavy.

  2. I know the feeling - I've made paneer before and experienced a similar level of chuffedness (is that a word?) after I achieved cheese nirvana.

    Like the look of JessiKaas - the buttermilk probably adds a lovely twang. *bookmarked*

  3. This was very brave! I am not sure if I would try to make cheese :)

  4. Marisa, oooh, cheese nirvana.. *stares off into the nothingness drooling*

    Tandy, if you can make gnocchi I'm sure this cheese wil be a breeze!

  5. This looks wonderful. I can't wait to try it. Yummy.

  6. Is't it great the respect you get for making cheese!? It must be a myth put about by cheesemakers that it's really hard - I like to make yoghurt cheese and marinate it on herbs and chilli and it inspires awe, hilariously, because it takes less time than boiling pasta.
    The bits of Peppadew are inspired, it looks really pretty and I'm sure tastes spicy and great.

  7. Sasa, it must be the cheesemakers that have spread this great myth but I won't complain, it's not often in life that so little effort gets you so much praise!