How To Make Whey

by Ann Marie Michaels on May 1, 2009

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howtomakewhey

If you’ve ever wondered how to make whey, this recipe will show you how. I’m not talking about powdered whey or whey protein. I’m talking about the liquid whey as in “curds and whey” — how to make whey from yogurt or milk.

Since I publish so many recipes that call for whey, I want to post this recipe for whey so you can refer back to it as necessary. I use whey to soak beans and grains (including oatmeal), and I use it in many lacto-fermented recipes including lacto-fermented salsa.

We’re talking about real, natural whey here — not that whey protein powder you see everywhere. This is the whey that Miss Muffett was eating with her curds. Whey is the liquid that’s leftover from milk or yogurt when it is strained to make cheese. Whey is also highly nutritious.

How To Make Whey

Makes about 2 pints

Making Whey With Yogurt or Kefir

Ingredients:

Yogurt or kefir (2 cups) — where to buy yogurt

Equipment:

Strainer
Clean cheesecloth (or thin dishtowel)

Directions:

1. Set a large steel mesh strainer in a large glass bowl or pitcher (do not use metal) and line it with some cheesecloth or a very thin dishtowel (if you use a thick one, it will soak up too much of the liquid)

2. Transfer the yogurt or kefir into the strainer.

3. Let it drip for a few hours. When the dripping slows, tie the cheesecloth or towel to a wooden spoon (or any big spoon) and place the spoon on top of the pitcher to where the towel of yogurt is hanging suspended in the pitcher from the spoon. You can also tie the cheesecloth to a cupboard handle and let it drip into the bowl below.

4. Let it drip overnight.

5. When it is has completely stopped dripping, pour the the liquid whey that dripped into the bowl or pitcher into a clean glass mason jar and store in the fridge. It will keep for about 6 months.

6. The white creamy stuff in the towel is cream cheese, and can be used in recipes or spread on toast. It will last a few weeks to a month in the fridge.

How to Make Whey With Raw Milk

Ingredients:
Raw milk (2 quarts) — where to buy milk

You can also use raw milk to make whey (don’t try this with pasteurized!).

1. Place 2 quarts of the milk in a glass jar, bowl or pitcher and leave at room temperature for 2-4 days until the milk separates into curds and whey.

2. Pour into the strainer lined with cheesecloth. Follow instructions above.

This post is a part of Fight Back Fridays at Food Renegade. Visit Fight Back Fridays for more stories about and recipes for real food.

Photo credit: Flickr and Wikipedia
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