American Cheese meets Real Cheese: A Love Story
Chances are when you were a kid, at least once a week your mom would make you one of those ooey, gooey grilled cheese sandwiches with cheese slices. The cheese would bubble out the sides, the creamy texture went perfectly with a big glob of ketchup, and frankly as an adult; you miss them.
Sure, there are lots of great (and real cheeses) out there, but they get oily or don’t melt quite right, when they get cold they get a bit on the gummy side and absolutely nothing about them resembles the grilled cheese your momma used to make.
You long for that nostalgic taste, but you know those tricky little packaged slices are so far removed from cheese that you can’t even kind of justify that kind of assault on your stomach.
You stare at the back of the package and read things like “modified milk ingredients” or “whey”, you even see a few things that you’re pretty sure are used to make rubber and glue. Not a shred of cheese in site….but it’s so crazy delicious…
You love real food…you love cheese slices…being an adult is hard.
We’re here to mend your broken, nostalgic heart. Making your own homemade cheese slices (American cheese) is easier than making a stew and better yet – you don’t have to compromise. Gooey, creamy awesomeness – meet real cheese!
The Brown Eyed Baker has trumped all recipes for American homemade cheese out there. There are tons of other methods (like steaming cheese or mixing different cheeses) but this recipe hands down take the sandwich. It tastes just like you remember, it’s easy (10 or 15 minutes to make), the ingredients are pretty handy and it tastes a bit like Velveeta (so if you’re craving shells and cheese – you can start melting up chunks for your pasta)
Once you try it – you’ll be keeping a block of this in your fridge indefinitely. Guaranteed.
American Homemade Cheese
Recipe and Images Courtesy of The Brown Eyed Baker (See the original: http://www.browneyedbaker.com/diy-american-cheese/ )
Yield: 1 pound American cheese
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 3 hours 30 minutes
An easy recipe for making your own American Cheese at home!
1½ teaspoons unflavored gelatin
1 tablespoon water
12 ounces Colby cheese, shredded fine (about 3 cups)
1 tablespoon whole dry milk powder
1 teaspoon salt
⅛ teaspoon cream of tartar
½ cup + 2 tablespoons whole milk
1. Line a 5×4-inch disposable aluminum loaf pan with plastic wrap, using enough so that excess hangs over the sides.
2. Sprinkle the gelatin over the water in a small cup and let sit until the gelatin softens, about 5 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, pulse together the shredded cheese, dry milk powder, salt and cream of tartar in a food processor until combined, about 3 pulses.
4. Bring the milk to a boil in a small saucepan. Remove from heat and immediately whisk in the softened gelatin until it is completely dissolved and the mixture is smooth.
5. Turn the food processor on so it is running, then slowly add the hot milk mixture to the cheese mixture until smooth, about 1 minute, scraping down the bowl as needed.
6. Immediately transfer the cheese to the prepared pan. Working quickly, pack the cheese firmly into the loaf pan to eliminate most air pockets, then smooth the top. Fold the overhanging plastic tightly against the surface of the cheese and refrigerate for at least 3 hours. The cheese can be stored in the refrigerator, wrapped tightly in plastic wrap, for up to 1 month.
Note: Be sure to use whole dry milk powder, not nonfat dry milk powder, as it will make a difference. I purchased my whole dry milk powder from King Arthur Flour.
(Recipe from The America’s Test Kitchen DIY Cookbook)