September 1, 2014

Mizithra Cheese - National Goat Cheese Month

August is National Goat Cheese Month. Just for fun, I ....

Yes, I know today is September first, and it isn't National Goat Cheese Month anymore...


A friend of mine suggested I make mizithra, the cheese that tops her favorite dish at the Old Spaghetti Factory in Indianapolis. I'd already made four cheeses, but I really wanted to do this one too. So you're getting a bonus cheese post!

My Nubian goats - Phoenix, Ziva, Firefly, and Felicity - have provided the milk I've used to make the cheeses, and the kind folks at Hoegger Supply Company, my favorite place to buy goat supplies, have provided the supplies I've been using for this series on goat cheese. My many thanks go out to them.

Mizithra is a traditional Greek cheese made from unpasteurized goat or sheep milk. This cheese takes several days to make but it is very easy. It uses fresh whey from making another cheese, so I made another batch of lemon cheese. This time the curds had begun to separate even before I added the lemon juice. I didn't have to add additional lemon juice and wait longer for the curds to separate correctly this time either. When I took the lid off the pot, the curds and whey looked like this:

I drained the whey from the curds, and then began making the mizithra. "Fresh whey" means just that: freshly drained from a batch of cheese, no more than an hour old.

To make mizithra, the recipe said to use:
4 quarts of fresh whey
2 quarts of whole milk
juice of a lemon
1 teaspoon cheese salt (optional)

Since I didn't have that much whey, I halved the recipe and used:
2 quarts of fresh whey
1 quart of whole, raw goat milk
juice of half a lemon
1/2 teaspoon of cheese salt

I poured the whey and the goat milk into my pot and heated it up to 90°F. This didn't take long at all because the whey was still quite warm. When it hit 90°, I removed the pot from the stove, added the juice of half a lemon and 1/2 teaspoon of cheese salt, stirred it once around, and put the top on the pot.

Then the pot sat in a warm place in the kitchen for 2 days - the directions say 2-3 days - until it was thick and curdled. The curds formed a bumpy layer on top of the whey.

I moved the curds to a cheesecloth-lined bowl.

I gathered the corners of the cheesecloth and hung the ball of curds from a plastic spoon in a pitcher so the whey could drain off. The direction recommends draining for 24-48 hours. The longer you let it drain, the firmer and drier the cheese will be. I let mine drain for 24 hours and it seems to have been just right.

I read that this cheese can be tangy when made at certain times of the year. Mine was definitely tangy!

What can you do with mizithra cheese? Hubby says it would be very good with crackers and fruit. Here is a link to that recipe for spaghetti with browned butter, my friend's favorite dish from Old Spaghetti Factory. I'll be making that for dinner tomorrow tonight.

I hope you've enjoyed this series on goat cheeses and National Goat Cheese Month as much as I have. I'd like to thank Hoegger Goat Supply for providing the cultures and other supplies I've used in this series. Do you need cheese? Make some!

National Goat Cheese Month
Week One - Lemon Cheese
Week Two - Ricotta
Week Three - Mozzarella
Week Four - Chevre
Bonus - Mizithra Cheese - this post

DISCLOSURE: The cheese cultures and supplies I'm using were supplied by 

This post has been shared at some of my favorite blog hops.


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  1. This a cheese I have never heard of! Looks interesting, thanks for sharing the recipe!

    1. It was new to me too, Sàndra.

  2. That looks delicious (and is also new to me). I am loving this series, Kathi - thanks!

  3. Thank you, Heidi. I'm glad you've enjoyed the series. :-)

  4. Thanks for sharing another awesome cheese recipe with us, Kathi! Of course, you realize that this is making me forget all about my experience with goats this spring ;-) I have a rather short memory!

  5. Your blog is very inspiring to me, I was raised on a farm and I believe that this way of living and eating is the way to a long healthy life. Hope you can stop by Fabulous Friday and share another inspiring post

  6. I totally agree with you, Maria. Thank you for stopping by. I'll link up another post to the Fabulous Friday party. ;-)


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