Quark is a delicious and very versatile creamy dairy product from Germany. For those of you not familiar with it, it’s almost like a very thick yogurt, or a looser whipped cream cheese. It doesn’t have the tang of a yogurt though. Because it’s not sweet or salt, quark can be used in a number of ways; spread on bread, served with fruit for a healthy dessert, baked into delicious cheesecakes, or even mixed with savory herbs for a wonderful dip.
A recent post about Quark on the Facebook page got a lot of comments…. mostly from people who miss having it easily available here in the United States. Strangely, although we have what seems like thousands of different yogurts in the dairy aisle, something as basic as Quark seldom appears. And if you do find it, it can be costly.
Because I LOVE a good German Cheesecake, and Quark is an essential ingredient for a real German Cheesecake, I’ve learned to make it myself. Lots of trial and error… and a bit of frustration… but I think I’ve got the recipe and technique worked out. And now I will share it with you.
Make Quark at Home
I will start off by saying, you have to really want Quark to go through the bother of making it yourself. Not that it’s difficult, in the opposite, it’s quite simple. Mostly it’s time consuming. And in the end, you don’t get a whole lot of Quark for the amount of milk. STILL… you get enough, and since Quark doesn’t last forever in the refrigerator, you don’t want to make more than you can use up.
Home Made Quark Recipe
I use a Yogurt Maker to make my Quark. The Yogurt Maker has a timer and sits on the counter where I can see it. And mine came with a fine meshed strainer… essential for the process.
Homemade Quark Recipe
- Yogurt Maker with strainer is best
- 1 Fine Mesh Strainer if the yogurt make doesn't come with it
- 1 Bowl that the strainer can rest on
- 4 cup WHOLE Milk
- ¼ cup Buttermilk whole is best, low fat is ok
- Pour the milk and buttermilk into the Yogurt Maker. Set for 13 hours... and then walk away.Check the batch. If it doesn't "set" you might have to run it a few more hours.
- Put a fine- meshed strainer over a bowl/container, and pour/scoop the thickened milk into it. Cover with plastic wrap and put it in the refrigerator.
- Let sit for at least 12 hours. (Pour off the whey/liquid at the bottom of the container from time to time. Some people save this, but I don't know how to use it, so I don't)
- Scoop the Quark out of the sieve into a bowl. Use or refrigerate for one week.
- NOTE- some of the whey at the bottom of the container might look "Thick"... you can pour this back through the strainer to catch more Quark. It's not a lot, maybe another Tablespoon or so, but my Oma taught me to hate waste.
Buy Your Yogurt Maker HERE
I used the Dash Greek Yogurt maker for years. But it seems to be unavailable now. These highly rated Yogurt Makers work the same way… and they come with a mesh strainer.
Yogurt Maker, Greek Yogurt Maker with Adjustable Time & Temperature, Multifunctional Yogurt Maker Machine with 1 Quart Glass Jars and Strainer for Yogurt, Greek Yogurt, Natto, Rice WineBear Yogurt Maker, Greek Yogurt Maker Machine with Strainer and Timer Control, Stainless Steel Inner Pot, Automatic Digital with 2 Glass Jars 1 Quart for Home Organic Yogurt, Cheese, Fruit Wine
Making Quark with a Yogurt Maker with PHOTOS
My Dash Greek Yogurt Maker
Pour all Ingredients into the Yogurt Maker… set it for 13 hours… and walk away
It will look like this after 13 hours
Notice that there is a separation between the Creamy stuff and the “whey”, the clear stuff
Put the strainer into the other container that comes with the maker, and pour the quark and liquid in to strain.
Pour the contents of the yogurt maker into a FINE strainer over another container. Strain for at least 12 hours.
After 12 hours of straining
Pour of the whey from the bottom container… (If it looks like there is a lot of thick creamy stuff at the bottom, you can send that back through the strainer for another 12 hours)
Whey over thick cream.. Pour off the whey, and possibly restrain the creamy part
And you’ve made Quark!
Using a Cheese Making Method to Make Quark
Gudrun Hommel sent me to this site for information about making Quark using a cheese making method. She says she’s had success, and that it’s easy to do. You need to order buttermilk culture from the company to make it work. The company is reputable, I’ve used another of their products, and there are lots of step-by-step instructions.
A Recipe for Making Quark– http://www.cheesemaking.com/Quark.html