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Keeping a Clabber Culture

Clabber culture cream cheese spread on sourdough toast

Keeping a clabber culture is a must if you have access to raw milk! It's similar to maintaining a sourdough starter but even easier. All you need is fresh, raw milk and time.

  • To get started fill a pint jar with raw milk and use the band of the mason jar lid to secure a coffee filter over the top to let it breathe.

  • Leave it in a warmish spot and wait a few days and the milk will thicken to the consistency of thick yogurt and start to separate a little bit. Your milk has clabbered!

  • Take a tablespoon of the clabbered milk and add it to a clean jar, fill the jar the rest of the way with fresh milk.

  • Put the coffee filter lid back on and wait. This time it should clabber a little bit faster.

  • Keep repeating this process 3-5 times until you are getting a reliable clabber about every 24 hours.

  • Don't stress if it takes longer for the milk to clabber! Temperature and environment play a huge factor. Sometimes I have to wait 2-3 days for milk to clabber. It's no bg deal, just be patient and trust the process, there's really nothing simpler!

You now have a ripe clabber culture that you can use to make all kind of cultured dairy products and every kind of cheese!

Wondering what to do with all the extra clabber? We use ours for baking and cooking in place of things like buttermilk, yogurt, or sour cream. I also salt and hang it to make a simple "cream cheese." If you have animals, you can also feed it to pigs or chickens and they will love you for it! I'll be adding clabber-discard recipes to the blog soon.


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