Farmer’s Cheese (A great cheese for beginners!!)

farmer's cheese


Whenever my sister and I get together, we cook.  I’m not talking your everyday meals, either.  We love choosing recipes that require a lot of work (I remember tackling Julia Child’s beef bourguignon recipe with her that literally took us ALL DAY to make) or just recipes we have not tried before (the bucket list recipes).  Last year, we decided on Farmer’s Cheese!  It was such an easy recipe!  Anyone can make this, even if you are a novice in the kitchen!  This is also great for kids to try!  This recipe yielded about 3 cups of cheese, and we made 3 different flavors!  Have fun with it and be creative!


Whole Milk            1 gallon

Pinch of salt

Juice of 1 lemon (you don’t have to use it all, just enough for the milk to curdle!)


  1. In a large pot, bring milk and salt to a boil.  Make sure you stir constantly to avoid scorching.
  2. As soon as the milk comes to a boil, turn off heat.
  3. Add lemon juice and stir.  Milk should instantly curdle!
  4. Line a colander with cheesecloth and pour milk into it.  What is left is the cheese!
  5. Wrap the cheesecloth around the cheese and squeeze until most of the water (whey) is gone.
  6. Store in refrigerator.


You can eat it plain or you can flavor the cheese as you wish!  Here are the flavors we tried!

  • Basil with roasted garlic, salt and drizzle of olive oil on top
  • Green onion with black pepper
  • Honey

Japanese Tea Ceremony

urasenkeUrasenke Foundation promotes peace through the way of tea.  My Aunty was the first woman teacher in this art in Hawaii.  I was so honored to experience this tradition with one of her former students in 2011.   I found the Uransenke Foundation in Portland, Oregon where I had the chance to participate in several tea ceremonies!  Find one in your town!


A Little Lamb

lamb patties  This is from the “simple recipe” vault!  I started eating lamb about 4 years ago when I met the ranchers from Umpqua Valley Lamb.  It’s a co-op of Ranchers located in the Pacific Northwest.  Their lamb is pasture raised and never in a feedlot facility, are given NO antibiotics or hormones, and are grass fed.  The result is a healthier animal, which makes for part of a healthy diet!  Their lamb has a clean flavor, not strong or gamey at all.  Growing up, my mom loved lamb and she would have it every now and then when we went out to eat a fancy dinner.  I remember having a distaste for it because of how strong the flavor was.  It was turn off for me and that flavor stuck with me until I had UVL! Their lamb is only exclusive through certain markets in Oregon and Washington only!  If you are from out of town and you LOVE lamb, find any of these retailers and get yourself some fresh lamb.  This recipe is simple with minimal ingredients because you don’t need a lot to enjoy the flavor of this lamb.  Get some!



Fresh ground lamb                           2 lbs

Garlic, minced                                      1 tsp.

Fresh mint, minced                           1.5 TBSP.

Fresh dill, minced                             1 TBSP.

Fresh lemon zest                                1 TBSP.

Salt                                                                1 tsp.



  1. Mix all ingredients in a bowl.  Let sit for a few hours to let the flavors out!
  2. Make yogurt sauce!  (recipe below)
  3. Shape into balls (little bigger than a golf ball)
  4. Flatten.  This recipe will yield about 12 patties.
  5. In a lightly greased frying pan on medium high heat (make sure your pan is hot), pan fry patties until lightly brown or until internal temp is at 145.  Don’t overcook patties or they will become dried out.

lemon cucumber mix!


Greek Yogurt, plain                          2 cups.

Cucumber, peeled, seeded and shredded on medium grate      1 cup.

Fresh lemon zest, minced                 1 tsp.

Fresh dill                                                       1 TBSP.

Roasted garlic, minced                    1.5 TBSP.

Salt                                                                  1 tsp.


  1. Add all ingredients in a bowl and let sit for a couple hours so the flavors can blend!
  2. Serve on lamb patties with warm flat bread.


I like to use any type of fresh salsa as a topping as well!  In this photo, we used fresh mango salsa!  I have a whole cupboard full of mint jellies and chutneys (thanks to my mom’s care packages!).  Those go well with this recipe too!