Getting whey and cream cheese (above) from yogurt (below). You can totally use store bought yogurt for this, it’s just less expensive to make your own. I did this last summer quite a bit with regular Walmart (it was hormone free, but that’s about all it had going for it) whole milk. This was my first time using decent milk, not raw, but at least it was whole and not homogenized. I was surprised that my whey was thicker and stickier this time. Before it was more the consistency of water, now it was about half way between water and honey.
I use a bowl, cotton yarn (left over from making dish cloths) and cotton dish towels.
Line the bowl with the dish towel, and dump in the yogurt.
You don’t want to over fill them or they leak all over and the inside of the cream cheese doesn’t get dry enough. So I did two for my 1/2 gallon of yogurt. I tie them up with the yarn and hang from the handles on my cupboards. Nourishing Traditions shows a cute little picture with the ball of cheese hanging off a wooden spoon suspended over a pitcher, but we don’t have a tall enough pitcher, so this works for us.
After letting the whey drain out into the bowl beneath, here is the cream cheese about 6 hours later. My cooking schedule depends entirely on nap times and bed times, so I started this in the morning when the kids were playing happily and did the rest (just filling the jars with whey and dumping out the cream cheese) during nap time.
We keep both in the fridge, the cream cheese doesn’t stay fresh all that long so you’ll want to use it pretty quickly.