Can't Get Enough of Neufchatel!

Neufchatel, known also as low-fat cream cheese, and farmer’s cheese, is a good place to start when you want to take it to the next level above yogurt and Ricotta in cheese making. With Neufchatel you actually use rennet (or substitute) to set the milk. True rennet is an enzyme that comes from the stomach of young (milk-drinking) pasture animals. There are plenty of artificial or plant-based substitutes out there that work just fine. In Morocco I’ve discovered Marzyme (tablet) and Froma (liquid) availably locally at a pharmacy.

The milk you use for this cheese cannot be UHT, or ultra-pasteurized. Otherwise, anything from store-bought to straight from the cow/sheep/goat/horse will work. You need to use real cultured buttermilk (or specially packaged starter) for this recipe.

I like this cheese because it is far from labor-intensive. Especially once you’ve gotten the hang of it. I know when I started out I had the cheese instructions in front of me, carefully making sure this lab experiment would turn out alright. There is a lot of waiting time, but I think it offers flexibility. It is something you can start and come back to after attending to other things. The actual working time is minimal.

Feel free to half/quarter/double this recipe as meets your needs. All proportions can be adjusted accordingly. In the end you have a nice spread able cheese. Great for many things, and especially cheesecake!

Neufchatel/ Farmer's Cheese/ Low Fat Cream Cheese

4 liters (1 gallon) milk
½ cup (4 oz.) Mesophilic Starter Culture (ripened buttermilk)
4 tablets Marzyme or ¼ tablet Rennet

1. Sterilize a large pot by adding a small amount of water to it and boiling it on high heat with the lid on for five minutes. Dump out water.

2. Mix milk and starter in the sterilized pot. Gently warm to room temperature.

3. Disolve rennet/Marzyme in 3-4 tablespoons cool water. Add disolved rennet/Marzyme to inoculated milk and blend thoroughly.

4. Cover and let sit undisturbed for 15-20 hours. Soft curds may form before 15-20 hours, but the full time is needed to develop flavor. Gently cut curd into ½ inch cubes.

5. Ladle the curds into a clean steril cloth suspended in a large strainer.

6. Hang curd to dry for about 8-12 hours or until desired consistency is reached.
7. Remove from cloth and mix by hand in a small bowl. Add salt, herbs, etc. to taste.
8. Store in a seable container in a refrigerator up to one week.

Ways to serve: Use mould to create form; add seasonings and herbs; use in cheesecake

**Drawings were made for teaching cheese making in Morocco. They are mine, so I'd appreciate it if you'd ask permission to use them (I will likely grant it). Thanks!


  1. This looks very interesting. I cannot get these nice cheeses in my little prairie town.

  2. Botanical Name: Mozzarella Cheese
    Mozzarella cheese is a mild flavoured and unripened variety of cheese. The origin of the mozzarella cheese is Italy and it was traditionally manufactured from buffalo milk. But the manufacture of mozzarella cheese is now spread throughout the length and breadth of the Europe and USA and modifications have been made to produce the mozzarella cheese from cow milk.

    The mozzarella belongs to the pasta-filata class of cheese. It involves the technique of stretching the curd under hot water to get a smooth texture and stringiness in the end product. Hence, this type of cheese possesses good melting and stretching properties. It is one of the best options for producing pizza.
    Mozzarella Cheese Recipe.
    Mozzarella cheese is popularly known as pizza cheese. It melts easily and is used not only as a pizza-topping but also in many other western dishes such as shepherd’s pie, mushroom, chicken pie and many more. Mozzarella cheese of finest quality is usually made from either buffalo milk or cow milk. Try making mozzarella cheese at home using the following recipe.
    Prep Time: 10 minutes
    Cook Time: 20 minutes
    Total Time: 30 minutes

    button 1/2 rennet tablet
    button 1/4 cup cool, chlorine-free water (most bottled waters are chlorine-free)
    button 1 gallon milk (2%, 1%, or skim)
    button 2 teaspoons citric acid
    button Salt, optionalr

    Crush the rennet into the water and stir to dissolve. Pour milk into a non-reactive pot (no aluminum or cast iron). Place over medium heat. Sprinkle the citric acid over the milk and stir a few times. Heat milk to 88 degrees F. Milk will begin to curdle.

    At 88 degrees F, add the rennet solution and continue stirring slowly every few minutes until the milk reaches 105 degrees F. Turn off the heat. Large curds will appear and begin to separate from the whey (the clear, greenish liquid).

    With a slotted spoon or mesh strainer, scoop the curd into a large glass bowl. (If it's still too liquid, let it set for a few more minutes). Press the curds gently with your hand and pour off as much whey as possible. Microwave curds on high for 1 minute, then drain off all the excess whey. With a spoon, press curds into a ball until cool. Microwave two more times for 35 seconds each, and continue to drain the whey and work cheese into a ball. In the meantime, place the whey over medium heat and let it heat to about 175 degrees F.Mozzarella Cheese for Taj

    When cheese is cool enough to touch, knead it like bread dough until smooth. When you can stretch it like taffy, it is done. You can sprinkle 1 to 2 teaspoons salt into the cheese while kneading and stretching it. The cheese will become stretchy, smooth and shiny. If it is difficult to stretch and breaks easily, dip it into the hot whey for a few seconds to make it warm and pliable. Then pick it up again and stretch it into a long rope. Fold over and stretch again. Dip in hot whey as needed to make the cheese pliable.

    When the cheese is smooth and shiny (this takes just a few minutes), it is ready to eat. Shape it into a log or golf-size balls, then store in a solution of 2 teaspoons salt to 1 cup water.

    Citric acid and rennet are available through mail order, some pharmacies or health food stores.
    about 3/4 pound mozzarella cheese (12 ounces)