Making your own cheese may seem a lengthy process, but it is easy, enjoyable and very rewarding. This low-fat, herby cheese is delicious, and perfect for summer picnics or lunches.
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500g (1lb 2oz) thick yoghurt
½ teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons chopped thyme leaves and thyme flowers, if available
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
2 teaspoons finely snipped chives
2-3 small sprigs of thyme (preferably in flower) to garnish
Method Prep:10min › Ready in:10min
Put a 25cm (10in) square of muslin in a saucepan, add boiling water to cover and return to the boil. Remove from the heat and, when cool enough to handle, squeeze the muslin dry.
Mix the yoghurt and salt. Line an unused 13cm (5in) diameter flowerpot with the muslin and spoon in the yoghurt, folding the muslin over to cover the surface.
Cut a piece of firm plastic (or the lid from the yoghurt pot) to fit neatly inside the flowerpot, covering the yoghurt, but with enough room for it to be able to sink slightly. Put a 200g (7oz) can of tomatoes or beans on top of the plastic and stand the flowerpot on top of a biscuit cutter inside a small bowl, to allow room for the whey to drain. Refrigerate for 2 days, draining off the whey after about 12 and 24 hours.
Turn the cheese out onto a plate and carefully strip off the muslin. (The cheese will keep, wrapped, in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.) When ready to serve, spread the herbs and some pepper out on a sheet of greaseproof paper and gently roll the cheese in them to coat the sides and top.
Decorate with thyme sprigs and serve with radishes and Bath Oliver biscuits. Alternatively, serve with lightly cooked broad beans, skinned, and crusty bread.