Seasoning of choice: olive oil, lemon zest, fresh herbs
Heat the milk in a heavy-bottomed pot over medium-low heat. Add salt and stir occasionally to avoid burning the milk. As soon as the milk starts to simmer (about 180-190 degrees), pour in the lemon juice and vinegar and stir. The milk should begin to curdle – if not, add in a little more lemon juice or vinegar. Turn off the heat and let the milk rest for about 10 minutes. Line a colander with at least two layers of cheesecloth. Pour curdled milk into the cheesecloth, tie cloth and hang over a bowl for a 1/2 hour – hour to ensure all the whey has drained (be careful not to let it hang too long, as the result will be too dry).
Once drained, open cheesecloth and either refrigerate cheese immediately or transfer to a plate to serve. If serving immediately, season with your favorite items: olive oil, lemon zest, salt and pepper and/or favorite fresh herbs such as thyme, parsley and oregano.
This mild cheese is great on crackers or on your favorite crostini. I recently served it up over a crostini topped by tomatoes, basil and olive oil.
The California fig season is officially underway! These fragile, pear-shaped beauties are one of our favorites and between Rochelle and I, we are fortunate enough to have five beautiful fig trees to harvest from. Plump and mildly sweet, fresh figs are delicious in their natural state or can be added to an array of savory or sweet dishes. Below are a few of our favorite ways to enjoy fresh California figs:
Goat Cheese and Fig Toast
Bread of your choice, toasted (we use Beckmanns bread from our local farmers market)
Fresh figs, sliced
Raw organic honey
Salt and pepper
Drizzle toast with olive oil, season lightly with salt and pepper and toast. Spread the fresh goat cheese on the warm toast, drizzle with honey, add a little pepper and top with fresh fig slices. Garnish with thyme.
Add this easy-to-make salsa to sliced, smoked steak for a hint of sweetness.
Fresh figs, cut into bite sized pieces
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
Fresh parsley, chopped
Pinch salt & pepper
Mix together oil, vinegar, salt and pepper. Drizzle over figs, add parsley and scallions and mix to combine. Garnish with blue cheese crumbles. Also, great on a steak crostini!
Blue Cheese, Honey and Walnut Figs
This super easy, savory appetizer bursts with some incredible flavors. The saltiness of the blue cheese complements the sweetness of the ripe homegrown figs finished with a delightful nuttiness of toasted organic walnuts. Click here for the recipe
I recently made some delicious coconut milk & blood orange popsicle from Fork, Knife, Swoon’s beautiful blog but ended up with about a cup of coconut milk leftover (I only used half of her recipe). Since it was a cold, raining day I decided to use the rest of the coconut milk in a delicious batch of (no cream) curried cauliflower soup.
Begin by heating the oil in a heavy pot over medium heat. Once hot, add the sliced onions with a pinch of salt and cook until soft, about 8 minutes. Reduce heat to low and add the garlic. Cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes (do not let garlic burn). Add the cauliflower, broth, curry powder and a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce to low. Simmer until florets are tender, about 12-15 minutes.
Puree the soup in a blender until smooth. Return soup to the pot and stir in the coconut milk. Add additional salt and pepper to taste or any additional spices.
Garnish with a little olive oil, parsley or toasted nuts.
Adapted from The Kitchn Vegan Cauliflower Soup recipe