Cheese curds are simply the young cheese. They haven’t been aged yet, or shaped into blocks. They also expire faster than processed cheese. They usually taste pretty fresh.
Cheese curds are solids that form when milk is separated into solids and liquid. Curds are taken and drained to be used in making cheese.
Curds of cheese are skimmed off the top of milk – it is cheese that has not yet been aged. In Wisconsin chese curds are served in place of French fries. They are either eaten raw and cold (they are fresh when they squeak! Seriously!) or battered with breading and then deep fried. Culvers restaurants have great deep fried cheese curds, if you would like to try some.
You can make cheese curds really easily! You need a carton of whole milk or a mixture of milk/cream, (I like organic) a large pot, a meat thermometer, distilled white vinegar, and a cheesecloth lined strainer. Heat the milk in the pot to 220 degrees Fahrenheit, stilling milk constantly to avoid the bottom burning. At 220 degrees, add a table spoon of white vinegar. A chemical reaction will occur and small curds will float to the top. Reduce heat, and sea salt (a generous pinch or two) and keep stirring. When the milk has finished separating pour the contents of the pot into the cheesecloth lined strainer. Squeeze out excess moisture with your hands and place in a bowl in refrigerator to harden for a half an hour or so. Enjoy!
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