March 21, 2009

Easter Cheese

Easter is on its way and I'm thinking about what I want to make for the holiday this year. As I wandered online looking for some new ideas I ran across a recipe for this cheese. I was stunned! My gramma made this cheese and I used to long ago too. In fact I taught my mom how to make it. I used to watch gramma make it and mom never did. So one day when she asked about it, I said I know how to make it!

Its not really a cheese per se, its more like a solid custard. But we serve it with the Easter meal of ham and kielbasa and such. Its a very Hungarian thing. But I never knew anyone who ever made it besides gramma. This recipe makes a lot. You don't have to make all this. In fact you can eyeball it cuz Ive done that when I wanted to make just a bit. I just used the amount of eggs I wanted, added some milk, the flavorings and tasted it while it cooked to see how much sugar to use. So here's the basic recipe. Feel free to make as much or as little as you want. Its really easy. Plus we used to fight over the liquid that was left. We loved to drink it. It almost tastes like eggnog only lighter. Don't waste it, its yummy.

Easter Cheese

* 12 eggs
* 4 cups milk
* 1 cup sugar (I would do this to taste, you can get away with less)
* 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
* 1 pinch ground nutmeg (my gramma used cinnamon, no nutmeg)

1. In an electric mixer, beat the eggs until mixed well.
2. Transfer the eggs to a double boiler and stir in milk, sugar, vanilla and nutmeg. Cook over a medium heat for 30 minutes. Use a metal slotted spoon and constantly stir the bottom of the pan to prevent scorching.
3. When the mixture looks just like cooked scrambled eggs, pour it carefully into a cheesecloth-lined colander. Carefully gather the ends of the cheesecloth in your hands and pull them together until the cheese forms into a ball. Tie the cheesecloth tightly at the top of the ball. Tie the cheesecloth ends over a faucet or to the handle of a kitchen cabinet (place a bowl under to catch the whey dripping down) and let hang for about 3 hours.
4. Untie the cheesecloth and wrap the cheesecloth ball in plastic wrap before refrigerating. The cheese will keep for about a week. Slice and serve.

Save the liquid to drink. Its safe its been cooked and its delicious!


Shirley said...

I didn't know cheese was so easy to make. I'm going to give this a try.

seanymph said...

Its called cheese but its not a cheese they way you know it. Its more of a solid sweetened custard. We serve it with our Easter meal, not as a dessert but we like to snack on it too.

Lynn said...

This sounds really interesting. I've never heard of this before but from your description, I'll bet it's yummy :)

Karen said...

Used to have this every Easter with my family. It’s called “Cirke”. Your version sounds very sweet. Ours was a dozen eggs, 1 quart of milk, 1 T of salt, 1 T of sugar. And yes, the leftover eggy liquid is good to drink! Chunked cirke with kolbasz, ham, YUM!

Karen said...
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