Specific Carbohydrate Diet recipes: Dry Curd Cottage Cheese and Sour Cream

DCCC - Make it Yourself!
Mon, 17 Mar 1997 17:14:12 GMT

Dear SCDers:
I did some net research and finally found out how to make Dry Curd Cottage Cheese yourself, for those people who can't find it in the stores and are still obsessed with trying it. Maybe you'll want to give it a whirl. It seems pretty time consuming to me, but at least you have the option.

I also found a website that tells quite a bit about cheese making. Check it out if you're interested in it:
Go to:
The section called "cheesemaking 101" is pretty good:

The following recipe was sent to me by a housewife who has dairy cows. YES, I believe it is DRY CURD, as all cottage cheese actually is until they start adding cream and other stuff to it. Just *omit the part about adding the cream at the end*, obviously.


Anna, The recipe that I use for cottage cheese comes from a cookbook called THE COMPLETE DAIRY FOODS COOKBOOK. It's out of print but if you can find a copy of it (your local library may have a copy), it is an excellent source and fun to read. We raise both dairy cows and goats for our own use but I have only use cow's milk in this recipe. Hope you enjoy it and if I can help any more, please let me know.
This recipe is fairly easy but takes time. Don't let the low-fat part fool you, the tasteis much richer than what you buy in the store.
Thanks for writing.
Debbie in Missouri


1 gallon raw skim goat's or cow's milk
4 ounces Cheese Starter

1. Pour the milk into a stainless steel kettle and set the kettle in a hot water bath.
Put the dairy thermometer in the milk. Heat until the milk reaches 160*F and hold 3 seconds. At once remove the milk kettle from the hot water and cool it rapidly in cold water to 72*F.

2. Add the cheese starter; stirring it in thoroughly. Cover the kettle and let it stand overnight at room temperature (in the low 70s). In 12 to 16 hours the milk should have set into a soft-firm custard-like curd. If you press the side of
the curd with a knife, a section should break away from the side of the kettle in a soft but clearly defined line if enough acid has developed to precipitate the milk solid. If the milk has not set, allow it to stand several hours longer. It may take 12 to 48 hours for the curd to set, longer if the starter was weak or the room is cold.

3. Using a long stainless steel knife, cut the curd in 3 directions, producing 1/4 to 1/2 inch cubes. Cut lengthwise, then crosswise, then using the knife at a slant, cut diagonal. As you cut you will notice the clear, pale yellow whey welling up as it is released from the curd by the cutting action of the knife. When all the curd is cut, allow it to rest in the kettle 10 minutes.

4. Put the curd kettle back in the hot water kettle. Put the dairy thermometer in the
curd, then heat SLOWLY 30 to 40 minutes. Bring the temperature up to 102*F if you are
using cow's milk and to 106*F if using goat's milk. The rate of temperature increase
should be about 1* per minute. During the hearing, stir the curd by lifting it up
gently from the bottom of the kettle with a slotted stainless steel spoon. Do not mash
or crush the curd.

5. Now raise the heat slightly and stir-lift more frequently as the curds tighten up and become tougher. When the temperature reaches 115*F, reduce the heat and keep stirring until the curds feel firm and slightly rubbery to a gentle pinch.

6. Remove the kettle from the heat and dip out as much whey as you can without rupturing the curds.

7. Line a colander with a double layer of damp cheesecloth. Set it in a bowl to catch the whey. Pour in the remaining curds and whey and let them drain several minutes.

8. Gather up the ends of the cheesecloth into a bag and rinse the bag of curds 2 to 3 minutes in cool water, gently palpating the curds for a thorough rinse.
Discard the water. Rinse several more times in fresh cold water to which a tray of ice cubes has been added.

9. Return the bag to the colander and allow it to drain an hour or longer.

The cottage cheese is now ready to eat. It is a low-fat, nutritious, high-protein food. You can vary the flavor and texture by stirring in several tablespoons of cream, or adding chopped chives, garlic, parsley, sage, tarragon or ground pepper.

Here are some of my own suggestions and/or preferences. I use an enamel canner or roaster pan and heat directly on the burner instead of a water bath. You have to heat it slow and watch for scorching. I use who cow's milk at room temperature.
When heating the curds, you can make them as soft or as firm as you like. You will develop a preference as you try it several times. We like a larger, firmer curd with salt and some cream added in. Add the salt after you have finished rinsing, right before step

9. If you add the cream right before you serve it, the drier curds will keep longer in the refrigerator. Ours never lasts long anyway. :)

A good source for your starter is:

New England Cheesemaking Supply Co.
P.O. Box 85
Ashfield, MA 01330
They will send you a catalog of cheesemaking supplies.

Good luck!!


This is an alternative, Danish version, which we received from Lotte Wackerhagen and Kirsten Iversen:

Homemade Dry Curd Cottage Cheese - app. 3 litres

  • 8 litres of pasteurized milk
  • Culture "starter", 100 ml, (for instance: buttermilk or yoghurt naturel)
  • 3 ml rennet (the bacterial culture), mixed with 10 ml cold water
  • Half a teaspoon fine salt

  • a thermometer for temperature controls when heating the milk

    Clean the 10 litre saucepan/pot with steelwool or other suitable material for cleaning. It is the tiny remnants that make the milk scorching and sticking.

    1. Pour milk in a saucepan with a thick bottom and heat while stirring to about 32 cup (Celcius).

    2. While still stirring, "starter" is poured into the milk. Milk must now be left quiet for 1 hour under cover, in order to ripe. Cover with a towel to keep temperature.

    3. Then add rennet and half a teaspoon fine salt into the milk, during a short stirring. Leave the milk for "renning" for about 1 hour, covered.
    After one hour, the coagulate should be ready to cut.

    4. When milk has coagulated, it is cut into dices, and the whey and the dry curd is parted. You have to cut coagulate with a long knife in homogene dices (about 1 cm x 1 cm x 1 cm).
    Suggestion on how to cut the cheese:
      1. Cut vertical, first in direction "east-west", then in direction "north-south"
      2. Then cut on a 45 degree angle, again first in direction "east-west", then in direction "north-south".
    Leave the contents of the pot for about 15 minutes under cover.

    5. Dry Curd is now heated to 45-55 celcius. Heating MUST be very slowly with very low heat, since the rise in temperature to 44-55 celsius should durate 1 hour.
    If done faster, the dry curd will end up like rubber, and not delicious.
    Stir cautiously now and then during heating.

    6. The contents of the pot is gradually poured in a colander to drain the whey.

    7. Right after, the cheese grains are rinsed out in abundantly cold water in the colander. Take care that the grains do not stick together. Separate big grain with the fingers. Shake off the water.

    8. Pour the dry curd in suitable containers. To be kept cool or in freezer.


    To Danish readers:
    The same recipe also exists in Danish. Check the SCD Web Library at:


    Cultured Dairy Products - Homemade!
    Mon, 17 Mar 1997 17:56:36 GMT

    The following are some internet addresses for sites on cheese, cheesemaking,
    and cultured dairy products. They are quite interesting. Following this, I
    have copied some more recipes for DCCC and Sour Cream.








    Recipe below is copied from:




    1 5.00 L skim milk
    2 125.00 mL cultured buttermilk
    3 3.00 mL salt
    4 250.00 mL table cream (optional)

    After skim milk and buttermilk come to room temperature (21 C), combine in a stainless steel container. Let stand at 21 cup until set (20 to 24 h). The curd is ready to cut when a soft gel forms and a small amount of liquid (whey) appears on the surface. Using a long knife, cut curd one direction into 1 cm strips and then cut the other direction to make 1 cm cubes, holding the knife at an angle. Let stand 10 min. Set the container of curds on a rack in a large pan of water.
    Slowly heat to 60 cup in l h, stirring every 5 min. Hold at 60 cup for l h stirring frequently. At this point the curds will be firm. Line strainer with four layers of cheesecloth then pour boiling water through cheesecloth. Drain cheese through strainer. Rinse curd with cold running water to reduce acidity (about 10 min). Let drain until all whey is out (about 15 min). Add salt; combine with table cream. Makes 1.5 L.




    1 500.00 mL table cream
    2 25.00 mL cultured buttermilk

    Combine cream and buttermilk in stainless steel or glass bowl. Cover and let stand undisturbed at
    room temperature until set (20 to 24 h). Refrigerate. May be stored up to 3 days in refrigerate.
    Makes about 500 mL.


    Below is copied from:

    Making Sour Cream

    To make sour cream, take one cup of fresh cream (or, if you don't have a milk cow, buy heavy whipping cream from the store). Mix it with one tablespoon of sour-cream (this is where the culture comes from).

    You need to keep this mixture, in whatever container you mixed it in, at about 70 degrees for 24 hours. If the top of your fridge is warm you could set it there.... I just fill up a bowl with hot water and put the container in there (usually have to weight it down or it will float). After 24 hours it will
    have thickened considerably. (If not, the temperature was too low... just get it to 70 degrees and let it
    sit until it thickens). Then put it in the fridge. It is best to refridgerate it for 24 hours before using it.

    Once you have your sour cream, you can use a tablespoon of it to get your next batch going...

    This is a great sour cream... we like it much better than what we buy at the store. Try it!

    Dear SCDers:
    I just recently noticed that Elaine says in the book that if we can find a
    brand of commercial sour cream that is very low in lactose, we can use it! I
    love sour cream, as I was brought up on Hungarian cooking which uses a lot of
    sour cream in it. You can add it to meat dishes, vegetable dishes, etc. You
    can also do these recipes with yogurt but it has more of a sour taste. If you
    make yogurt with whipping cream, I find it tastes more like sour cream. I am
    going to try to make homemade sour cream. It's hard to find info about how to
    make it on the net, but I came across a couple of recipes. It seems that the
    key is that you need a different bacterial culture for a starter (which you get
    from either commercial buttermilk or sour cream), and it must be incubated at a
    lower temperature than yogurt. Therefore, I can't use my yogurt maker. I am
    going to try doing it in the oven with a 40 watt light bulb. I'll let you know
    how it turns out.

    Have any of you out there tried store bought sour cream or made it yourself?
    I would love to hear from anyone who is interested in the concept of these
    homemade cultured dairy products, as I am. Especially if you have actually
    made something other than yogurt.

    I would like to confirm with Elaine that making our own cottage cheese and sour
    cream is allowable also, so if any of you call her in the near future, please
    add this question to your list and let us know.



    How to make allowable SOUR CREAM
    Fri, 25 Apr 1997 17:30:18 GMT

    To all who want to try making SOUR CREAM:
    Store bought buttermilk can be used as a STARTER to make homemade SOUR CREAM. You do it the same way as you make yogurt, using half and half or whipping cream. You must ensure the cream has no bad additives in it though. In my area I can not find any brand of whipping cream that does not have carageenen or other crap added. (Not only is it bad in general to have additives for yogurt/sour cream making purposes, but I have read several articles that said carageenen has been used as an agent to CAUSE Crohn's in lab rats! ) Anyway, you can make sour cream the same way as yogurt, but it needs to be fermented at a lower temperature. Therefore, the yogurt makers most of us have are set at too high a temperature for sour cream. The way I figured out how to do it is to make a batch of yogurt and then put the batch of sour cream ON TOP of the yogurt containers, and wrap the whole machine with a thick bath towel. I have a Salton yogurt maker with those 7 little glass cups. I simply don't put the big plastic cover on top of the machine, and put the sour cream batch directly on top of the little jars (in a bowl or other glass/ceramic container). Covering it all with a towel acts like a "tea cozy", retaining the heat. This way the sour cream can ferment at the lower temperature required.

    The only difference between yogurt and sour cream is the 1) fat content (usually sour cream is made with full fat heavy cream, and yogurt is lighter); and 2) the SPECIES of bacteria used as a "culture" are different. You can buy powdered starter for sour cream (hard to find), or use buttermilk or commercial sour cream. I found it impossible to find a store bought brand of sour cream that has no bad additives though, so I use buttermilk in which ingredients are: milk, bacterial culture, salt. I have been using half and half cream because the ingredients are: milk, cream. I use it to make all my yogurt and my sour cream. The sour cream would taste better if I used whipping cream (heavy cream), but I simply can't get it anywhere around this major metropolitan city unfortunately! The sour cream comes out milder in flavor than a commercial sour cream tastes, but it is still very good and tasty, and different from yogurt.

    I don't think many people are aware that we are allowed to have sour cream on the SCD "if we can find one with minimal lactose", as it says in the book. Since this product did not exist in my area, I researched on the net how to make it. That's when I found out how to make DCCC also, but I'm not that ambitious, since I can buy a perfectly good DCCC here at the stores. Personally, I LOVE sour cream, and being raised on a lot of Hungarian cuisine which has a lot of sour cream in many of the dishes, I can find lots of uses for it.

    Try it, it really can add tremendous variety to your meals and it's something different! I invented this procedure using a Salton Yogurt Maker with 7 little jars. I'm sure if you have another type of Yogurt Maker you could ad lib a way to do it. The point of the matter is getting a consistent temperature which is lower than the temperature the yogurt ferments at. By placing the sour cream batch on top of the yogurt, the temperature is automatically lower because of the distance from the heat source, yet it remains consistent over the 24 hours. You MUST make yogurt at the same time as you make the sour cream.

    1. Heat 1 1/2 or 2 litres or quarts of cream (with no additives) to boiling point. (The amount of cream you use depends on how much sour cream you want to make, which also depends on how big your bowl or container is. The container must be able to sit ON TOP of the jars of yogurt that fit into your yogurt maker.)

    2. Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature

    3. One litre/quart of the cream will be used to make yogurt and the rest will be used for sour cream.

    4. Proceed with making the yogurt as usual, using 1/2 of the cooled cream. Add the starter, fill the yogurt jars, put the lids on, & place in the machine.

    5. To the remaining bowl of cream add 1/8th cup commercial buttermilk (ensuring the ingredients are only milk, bacterial culture, salt)

    6. Stir well and pour this mixture into a suitable container for fermenting. It should be a glass bowl or jar, ceramic dish, or pyrex casserole (not metal or plastic).

    7. Place the container ON TOP of the little glass jars in the yogurt maker.

    8. Cover the whole machine with a THICK bath towel, bunching it up around the machine to retain the heat.

    9. DO NOT tuck the towel underneath the machine, as this could be a fire hazard.

    10. Wait 24 hours, then remove all the sour cream and yogurt and refrigerate the containers until well chilled before using.

    11. ENJOY!



    Date: Wed, 30 Jul 1997 12:46:48 -0500
    From: Harvey Koelner <ravko@IX.NETCOM.COM>

    Subject: Re: help

    I am extremely lactose intolerant and I use Breakstones small curd,dry curd cottage cheese with added skom milk with no problem. Made by Kraft foods 800-538-1998


    I don't know about Southern California, but here in Northern California dry curd cottage cheese is called bakers cheese. I called up a nearby dairy, confirmed they made it, found out what stores they distribute to, then ordered a case from one of those stores.


    Mon, 24 Aug 1998 19:42:06 GMT

    Just a word of caution. For a year I've been buying a dry curd cottage
    cheese (labeled as such) thinking it was OK. Now I realize that the
    ingredients state: "cultured skim milk, milk" I thought it was dry
    curd, but in reality milk has been added back into the product and it is
    not OK.

    Maureen   mstohlme@iastate.edu


    Date: Wed, 1 Jul 1998 03:19:41 -0400
    From: Rachel Turet <rachel@longisland.com>
    To: SCD-list@longisland.com
    Subject: Re: *Rachel is Friendship Farmer cheese okay?

    Dear Ruth,
    According to Elaine, Freindship farmers cheese has 1 to 2% lactose and is OK to use.


    February, 1999

    SOUR CREAM - Homemade (II)

    Melissa and others,
    I make my own sour cream, using powdered starter from the health food store & half and half cream. It's the same as making yogurt, but you use either the powdered "sour cream/buttermilk starter" OR regular commercial buttermilk from the supermarket with no additives. The difference is, you don't need to use the yogurt maker because the temperature required for fermentation is room temperature! It's actually easier to make than yogurt because of this.

    As an aside, a couple years ago or so, I posted a lot of instructions on making sour cream (which I believe are still on Mik's SCD site), but unfortunately, they are out of date and wrong, because, since then, I figured out an easier and better way to make it, as noted above.

    I will list the exact instructions for those interested:

    -bring to the boil one litre/quart half and half cream.
    -allow it to cool to room temperature.
    -strain out any skin that has formed on the top.
    -remove about a cup or so of the cooled cream, and add to it 1/4 cup of commercial additive free buttermilk, OR freeze dried powdered sour cream/buttermilk/fresh cheese starter (this is what it should say on the envelope).
    -stir for at least 2 minutes until completely disolved.
    -pour the cup of cream mixture back into the container of the rest of cooled cream.
    -stir well to combine.
    -pour into 2 or more containers (such as glass jars, or plastic sour cream or yogurt containers)
    -cover tightly and place in an undisturbed spot in the kitchen, such as the back corner of the counter top.
    -leave it to incubate for 24-30 hours. It should be done in 24 hrs, but it won't hurt to leave it up to 30, but then it should be refrigerated to prevent mold, and spoilage.
    -If you disturb the container, sometimes it seems to ruin the process and the sour cream doesn't Gel properly.

    - Let me tell you, this is the most delicious sour cream anyone has ever had, because it is PURE. Take a look at the labels of all the commercial sour cream in the stores. It is loaded with all kinds of crappy additives and thickeners. The homemade kind has no lactose, as far as I know (and it has never bothered my stomach), and it is perfectly thick and tastes exactly like real sour cream, not yogurty.
    - I encourage everyone to try it. There are TONS of dishes that can be improved with sour cream. Let me know how it goes if anyone decides to try it.

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