MAKE LOCKDOWN DAIRY TREATS

Here are a few super easy tips and recipes for frozen yoghurt lollies, mac and cheese muffins and homemade cottage cheese. Great to make with kids. Then also some tips on how to preserve your dairy for as long as possible during lockdown.

EASY FROZEN YOGHURT LOLLIES

Make frozen yoghurt at home!  You don’t have to buy frozen yoghurt at speciality stores.  Just grab a 6-pack of your kids’ favourite yoghurts, push a teaspoon through the foil lid of the yoghurt containers and place it in the freezer until completely frozen. Serve as an frozen yogurt lolly.

You can also involve the whole family in creating your own frozen yoghurt delights by using your own containers or lolly moulds. Add cut-up fresh or dried fruit, fruit purees or pulp, nuts, seeds or granola, chocolate chips, pieces or sauces. The video above also adds some condensed milk.

QUICK MAC AND CHEESE MUFFINS

For 9 muffins, you will need:

3 cups cooked macaroni

200g cheese

1 cup milk

1 egg

2 Tbsp cornstarch

Fresh chives

Method: Heat oven to 200C. Prepare a muffin pan with muffin cases. Add the cheese to the macaroni, microwave for 3 minutes. In a separate bowl mix the milk, egg and cornstarch. Combine the egg mixture with the macaroni mixture. Add the chopped chives. Fill the muffin cases and bake at 200C for 20mins.

MAKE YOUR OWN COTTAGE CHEESE

Did you know that cottage cheese is incredibly easy to make at home, using only two ingredients?

You will need:

2 litres full-cream milk

500 ml maas

 A muslin or cheese cloth

Method: Mix together the milk and maas and cover. Let it stand in a warm place and allow to curdle. Do not stir. This process can take up to 24 hours, so be patient. Line a colander with the clean cloth and suspend it over a bowl.  Once your mixture has curdled, gently ladle the curds into the lined colander to strain the curds from the whey over the course of the next few hours. Stir the curds every once in a while to help it along. Scoop the cottage cheese into a clean bowl, cover and refrigerate. It is ready for use. You can add flavours of your own choice for savoury or sweet uses. 

Homemade cottage cheese can be the star of a delicious and healthy breakfast or lunch.

For more delicious, dairy-inspired family treats visit Rediscover Dairy.

TIPS TO PRESERVE YOUR DAIRY

These hacks were shared with us by Rediscover Dairy, to help you easily manage, buy, store and use dairy during lockdown.

The good news is that a wide variety of fresh dairy products freeze very well:

PRESERVE FRESH MILK

Yes, fresh milk can be frozen.  Make sure that there is some empty space in your airtight container as milk expands when it freezes. Buying fresh milk in 1 litre plastic bags is a great solution if you are going to freeze as they are space-savers.  Don’t worry if sometimes the milk separates slightly after defrosting; give it a good shake, it is still safe to consume.

TIP! Freeze fresh milk in ice-cube trays for delicious homemade ice coffees and ice teas. Goat’s milk also freezes well. Defrost milk in the fridge overnight or in a water bath.

PRESERVE FRESH CREAM & SOUR CREAM

The same applies to fresh cream and sour cream.  Freeze it on the day of purchase so that you have it on hand for the lockdown weeks ahead.  You can still enjoy your favourite creamy pasta sauces and desserts; dishes such as chicken a la king and beef stroganoff or toppings for baked potatoes, burritos, enchiladas and tacos.

DID YOU KNOW? Fresh cream cannot be whipped after it has been frozen.

PRESERVE BUTTER

Butter has a naturally long life in the fridge, but many South Africans find they are doing extra baking during lockdown.  Stock up on a few extra butters, especially if they are available at a good price, and slip them into spaces in your freezer. 

TIP! Frozen butter can be grated when required in small amounts.

PRESERVE CHEESES

Cheeses also freeze well.  Some varieties may crumble a bit after defrosting but they are perfectly safe to eat and easy to use in sauces, baked goods or on sandwiches.

TIP! For easy use, you may want to grate hard cheeses and store small amounts in separate freezer bags for up to three months. 

THESE PRODUCTS NATURALLY PRESERVE LONGER

UHT products are an obvious one but lately milk powder, which is dried milk, that dates right back to the 1800’s, is enjoying a resurgence under lockdown.  Always check the ingredients on the label to make sure you are buying 100% cow’s milk (remember that coffee creamer is not a milk product).

Fermented dairy products such as buttermilk, maas, yoghurt and kefir naturally have longer shelf life than fresh dairy products due to the activity of the gut-friendly bacteria.  Buttermilk, maas and sometimes, yoghurt can be great substitutes for fresh milk in many baking and bread recipes.  You can also easily find many delicious recipes where they are the featured wet ingredient.

Cheeses are also fermented dairy products containing beneficial bacteria that have a reasonably long life in the fridge.  It helps to store cheeses in a dry, airtight container; you can add a paper towel to absorb any moisture.  If mould does develop on the outside of cheese, simply slice it off at a depth of 1cm.

(RELATED POST: TANGY BLUEBERRY CHEESECAKE ICE CREAM)

SUPER EASY INDULGENT CHOCOLATE CAKE
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