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Old 07-04-2017, 09:02 AM   #1
RexsreineSC
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Got cottage cheese?

A fair number of people hate cottage cheese, my DH being among them.
I grew up on it in SoCal where a particular dairy (Altadena) made great cottage cheese. There were a few other quite good brands way back then as well.

Alas, the passing of the years has seen severe quality degradation in this basically simple product. Low quality milk, increasing numbers of various additives, etc., etc. Most cottage cheeses from a regular grocery store are blandly salty with no other flavor. No such thing as a quart of it anymore either. And, the smaller containers are not really full and there's a lot of watery liquid surrounding the ill-formed curds. The stuff is okay, IF very well-drained, in recipes but don't try to just eat it!

The only brands that taste good to me anymore are Trader's Point and Nancy's Cultured. These are available only - at least where I live - in natural foods stores, of which only one store sells the Trader's Point. A high price and the store is frequently out of stock.

Enter the new marketing strategy of cottage cheese makers. Yes, you read that right. There are several new players in the field. Articles I've read say they want to cut into the gigantic market for Greek yogurt.

So, what's the point of all this?

New kid in my town is "good culture" cottage cheese. Yes, they spell the name with small "g" and small "c". As of now I can find it only at Publix and only the individual containers of 5.3 ounces. This grocery store has carried blueberry, strawberry, and plain full-fat. The label says the individual size of plain contains 150 calories, 5 grams of carbs, and a whopping 18 grams of protein.

Flavor: OH MY!!!! :jumpy:

It is so delicious I can eat it totally plain. It has a very "cultured" flavor, which you either like or don't.

Can't tell you the price because DH is the one who bought it yesterday. I will assume it's more expensive than other brands.

I intend to buy as much as I can eat within the expiration time. I want my store to continue carrying it AND to stock the larger containers which the company's website tells me are made.

Sorry for a rant on something like cottage cheese.

You may find other "new" brands of cottage cheese in your locale.

Ginny in SC (Aiken, a city of only about 31,000)
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Old 07-04-2017, 09:23 AM   #2
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Breakstones and especially Daisy brand taste horrible to me! I like the Giant Eagle store brand better than those brands. Thanks for the heads up about the good culture cottage cheese!
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Old 07-04-2017, 10:05 AM   #3
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Another bad brand is from our beloved Braum's store. Cottage cheese can be funky for sure.

My minlaw made her own..I wonder how hard that would be.
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Old 07-04-2017, 11:12 AM   #4
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Carolyn, in my exasperation, I've made cottage cheese myself. No, it's not particularly hard.
BUT, most of today's milk is ultra high heat pasteurized. Not good. No flavor. Denatured proteins. Also why heavy whipping cream isn't as yummy as it was years ago.

You can buy a good powdered culture online. Finding quality, tasty milk is another whole story...

I can get raw milk here (not allowed in most states) but I have to admit that my three or four attempts using it for cc were not unqualified successes. Meaning, the "good" brands I've mentioned really are better than my so-so results.

I would wager your husband's mother used fresh, raw milk. It will naturally clabber on its own.

Ginny in SC
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Old 07-04-2017, 12:21 PM   #5
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She did have fresh cow's milk on the farm.

I did buy some animal rennet on line. I will experiment. Let you know.

Thanks for your advice.
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Old 07-04-2017, 03:38 PM   #6
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HEB carried a brand called Bison and it was wonderful! But they stopped carrying it
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Old 07-05-2017, 06:11 AM   #7
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Safeway's own brand of cottage cheese was my grocery store favorite when I lived in AZ. But that's was six years ago, so who knows whether it's still good.

I'd be interested in knowing what new, good brands are out there.
Some might be nationally or regionally distributed.

So, if you've sampled one and like it, let us know.

Cottage cheese can be the basis for a great, quick and easy summer meal.

Ginny in SC
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Old 07-05-2017, 06:33 AM   #8
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Nancy's cultured cottage cheese is the BEST! I eat it daily. I think it is also less expensive than the good culture--
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Old 07-07-2017, 10:56 AM   #9
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Okay, ladies... homemade cottage cheese in the making. We shall see..

I used David Lebowitz's recipe from his site and Braum's antibiotic free milk.
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Old 07-07-2017, 11:09 AM   #10
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In the mid-Atlantic region (SE Pennsylvania, at least) my vote goes to Friendship brand 4%. One half cup is 120 calories, 3 g. carbs, 15 g. protein, 5 g. fat.

Little low on the fat if you're eat LF/HC, but you can always add a splash of olive oil.
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Old 07-07-2017, 01:46 PM   #11
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In California, I like Knudsen, but only the 2%. The 4% has bigger curds and more watery whey. All the other brands I have tried have bigger curds and more liquid. I have never tried Nancy's though.

I'm not sure, but I think Knudsen may be Breakstone in other places.
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Old 07-07-2017, 03:23 PM   #12
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My cottage cheese was a bit success! I used a quart of milk and maybe got 1 1/2 cups of the cheese. I added some heavy cream, and will adjust the salt, but it is very tasty.
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Old 07-08-2017, 06:50 AM   #13
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Recipe, please

Okay, Carolyn, out with the goods!!

First, precisely what kind of milk did you use? Full-fat, 2%, or skim?
Was it ultra high-heat pasteurized??

What was your process?

I am really interested in the specifics because my own tries were only moderately successfully.

I used a powdered culture to "set" the milk. Milk was pasteurized, though label did not specifically say "ultra", so I was assuming it was not. Could have been a bad assumption...

Heated the curd and whey (what Little Miss Muffet was eating...)till firmer, then drained. Added a bit of salt and heavy cream.

It was good, certainly better than most brands at store. BUT, it did not have that highly cultured, buttery-nutty flavor (hard to describe) of Nancy's or good culture.

Thanks for experimenting!!!

Ginny in SC
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Old 07-08-2017, 07:55 AM   #14
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When I was young, very very many years ago, I loved cottage cheese. Now I no longer buy it because I cannot find one that tastes the same as it did back then. After reading this thread, I'm thinking it was probably because what they had back then was probably more like the cultured you are talking about here. Can't see myself making my own, but I will never say never.
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Old 07-08-2017, 09:45 AM   #15
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Ginny and others..

I used Braums milk...just says Pasteurized...I used whole milk and animal rennet from Amazon.

Heated one quart of milk to 85 degrees. (Not too warm). Put 4 drops of rennet in the milk, off heat, and stir gently for 2 minutes.

Then cover the pan with clean cloth towel and put the pan lid on and let set for 4 hours on the counter.

Then score the slightly set up Cheese with a knife, vertically and horizontally.
Then add 1/2 tsp of salt.

Put back on the stove..medium heat and stir with slotted spoon until curds form. It took a couple of minutes. It seemed like small curds formed, then bigger ones. They said if you stirred too long, the curds would be tough.

Then pour mixture into a cloth lined colander. I used an old fashioned cotton dish towel. Drain whey. Mine took about 2 minutes, but if the curds had been smaller, they say to put this in the fridge for an hour.

Put curds into a storage bowl, add heavy cream and more salt if you want and store in fridge. Whey can be used as milk in shakes or other things, I guess.

Lots of whey! I got maybe 1 1/2 cups of the cheese, but enough for 3 servings.
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Old 07-08-2017, 01:19 PM   #16
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Thank you, Carolyn, for taking the time to post results.

So, just rennet and no culture of any kind?

I used a culture for cheese making from an online source specializing in such. Did not have to add rennet but it did sit on the counter over night. Did the same scoring, cooking, draining process as you did. I got lots of whey, too. That's where all the carbs are so I did throw it out. I've read that old-time farmers' wives fed it to the animals.

What kind of taste did your cottage cheese have?
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Old 07-08-2017, 02:18 PM   #17
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Just used 4 drops of animal rennet. The taste was very mild. I think I cooked it a bit too long, so will try less time next time.

You can also make mozzarella from milk and rennet with citric acid.
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:36 AM   #18
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my fave cottage cheese was ALWAYS

Friendship 2% small curd. not because it was low fat. but, because it was delicious. trouble was, I ate the whole container in 1 sitting. it is/was that good. ergo, CC is out of my plan for the foresee-able future. Love & Profits: FLATFERENGHI
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Old 07-14-2017, 09:59 AM   #19
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This thread has peaked my interest in cottage cheese again. Unfortunately, none of the really good brands mentioned are available in my area, so I decided to just try different local brands until I find one I like. I started out with Great Value from Walmart. It was thick the way I like it, but it had an odd taste to me. Now I have Dean's Dairy, from Dallas Tx. It has a good taste, but was a little runny for my liking. I put it in my cheese strainer that I used when I used to make yogurt and it drained the excess liquid and it's pretty good now. I want to try Daisy, too, because of it not having any added ingredients, but I'm thinking without the gum added as a thickener, it will be too running for me, but I have my cheese strainer if necessary.

Thumbs Up! to those of you making your own!
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Old 07-14-2017, 05:18 PM   #20
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Carol, with the runny brands, there's a little trick I picked up somewhere along the line.
After opening the container, place several coffee filters (the scalloped cup kind) on top of the cottage cheese. Turn the container upside down, place it on a small plate, and refrigerate.

A lot of water will be absorbed by the filters. You can keep replacing the filters with fresh ones each time you remove some of the cheese for eating. More and more liquid is absorbed.

Of course, putting the cottage cheese in a strainer works, too!

HTH Ginny in SC
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Old 07-15-2017, 02:11 PM   #21
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Ginny, here is the yogurt strainer I have. It's like a tupperware container with a lid, with a mesh insert. You just put the cottage cheese or yogurt in the mesh inserts and the next day or even a few hours later all the extra liquid is down in the bottom of the container and you just dump it out. Then I scrape the cottage cheese back into the original container.

http://www.kitchenandcompany.com/sma...heese-Maker/?=
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Old 07-16-2017, 06:28 AM   #22
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Carol, I have that same yogurt strainer. I do use for yogurt.
Will now start using it for cottage cheese.

Thanks for the tip!

Ginny in SC
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Old 07-16-2017, 08:45 PM   #23
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Today, I went to another store that had Daisy Cottage Cheese which I wanted to try, and also 2 others that I haven't tried so I bought all three. LOL I wanted to do a taste test. Daisy was the only one that didn't have the extra ingredients, like the gum for thickener. It was my favorite. I was surprised that it wasn't runny at all, but nice and thick the way I like it and had a good taste. The other two were Crawleys and Cabot. I love Cabot Yogurt, but didn't like their cottage cheese at all. Crawleys was acceptable, but Daisy won over the other two. That will be my choice until I can find another, like Nancy's.
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Old 07-17-2017, 05:25 AM   #24
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Thanks, Carol. I love to hear about taste tests.
They'r so much. DH and I do them, too.

Anybody else who does taste tests, please report!

Ginny in SC
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