Note: See also the files: almond-milk-msg, almond-cream-msg, cheese-msg, nuts-msg, chestnuts-msg, spreads-msg, butter-msg, whey-cheeses-msg, larded-milk-msg

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alnd-mlk-chs-msg - 10/2/10
Period almond milk cheese. Cheese and butter-like compounds make from almond milk.
NOTE: See also the files: almond-milk-msg, almond-cream-msg, cheese-msg, nuts-msg, chestnuts-msg, spreads-msg, butter-msg, whey-cheeses-msg, larded-milk-msg.

This file is a collection of various messages having a common theme that I have collected from my reading of the various computer networks. Some messages date back to 1989, some may be as recent as yesterday.

This file is part of a collection of files called Stefan's Florilegium. These files are available on the Internet at:
I have done a limited amount of editing. Messages having to do with separate topics were sometimes split into different files and sometimes extraneous information was removed. For instance, the message IDs were removed to save space and remove clutter.
The comments made in these messages are not necessarily my viewpoints. I make no claims as to the accuracy of the information given by the individual authors.
Please respect the time and efforts of those who have written these messages. The copyright status of these messages is unclear at this time. If information is published from these messages, please give credit to the originator(s).
Thank you,

Mark S. Harris AKA: THLord Stefan li Rous

Stefan at


Date: Tue, 17 Jun 2008 16:26:56 -0400

From: euriol

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Almond milk cheese

To: Cooks within the SCA

I just found a Butter of Almond Milk which seems to resemble more of a

cheese to me in Liber Cure Cocorum. You can find it at:

Date: Tue, 17 Jun 2008 16:34:52 -0500

From: "Terry Decker"

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Almond milk cheese

To: "Cooks within the SCA"
euriol wrote:

<<< I was playing and reading on almond milk just last week. You should be able to take any cheese recipe and just substitute the almond milk for the

amount of milk called for. >>>

Are you sure? Does rennet set almond milk?


Antonia di Benedetto Calvo
I doubt it, since I don't believe almond milk contains casein. However, the

cooked almond milk can gelatinize.

Ein Boch von Guter Speise and Das Kochbuch von Sabina Welserin have almond

cheese recipes which either depend on the gelatinization or on the mixing of

almonds, almond milk and dairy products.
You can find Alia Atlas's translation of Guter Speise here:

and Valois Armstrong's translation of Sabina Welser here:


Date: Tue, 17 Jun 2008 16:00:29 -0700

From: David Walddon

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Almond milk cheese

To: Cooks within the SCA
Also Epulario 1598 (easily searchable at work) has these for cheese

and butter. The egg one at the end is just for fun! No relationship

to the cheese or butter discussion.
I haven't tried any of these recipes to see how they turn out.
Anyone else?
195) To make Curds of Almonds in Lent.

Take blanched Almonds and stampe them with Rosewater, then with two

ounces of Sugar, ten ounces of Rosewater, and halfe a pint of Pike or

Tench broth, (for the broth of other sea or fresh water fish is not

good, and let not the broth be very salt but somewhat thicke) temper

them together, and straine it so hard that there remaine no part of

the substance of the Almonds in the Strayner, let this Curd stand for

the space of one night, and put it in a dish or other vessell, and in

the morning you shall find it curdy like curds of Milke. And if you

will you may put them into greene leaves or other hearbes like Cheese

curds, or let it stand in the dish, strawing it with Sugar or

Annyseed Comfigs, you may adde thereto a little flower because it

196) To counterfet Lenten Cheese Curds

Take a pound of blanched Almonds and stampe them as aforesaid, then

take foure ounces of Sugar, an ounce of Rosewater, and a glasse full

of fish broth aforesaid, and of the same fishes broth : then temper

them together & strain them thicke, then forme them and send them to

the Table in a dish or upon a plate, strawing it with Sugar and

Annyseed comfets.
197) To counterfeit Butter.

Take a pound of blanched Almonds as aforesaid, & stamp them and

straine them with halfe a glasse of Rosewater, and to make them curdy

put a little flower or half a glasse of Pike or Tench broth, with

four ounces of Sugar and a little Saffron to make it yellow,

straining it thick, then make it in fashion of a dish of butter, and

set it all night to thicken against morning in a cold place.
198) To counterfeit Egges.

Take Almonds and blanch them well and stampe them, tempering them

with Rosewater that they bee not oiley, adding some Pike broth that

is fat, and strain them like milke, then take halfe a pound of clean

Rice according to the quantity you will make, which seeth in halfe

the milke made of the Almonds : take also three ounces of the best &

whitest flower that may bee gotten, and dissolve it in the other

halfe of the milke, then let it boyle for the space of halfe a

quarter of an houre, stirring it with a spoon, and let it not tast of

the smoke : this done, take the Rice aforesaid and all the milk, and

strain it hard with your hand, for the thicker the better, and forget

not to adde good store of Sugar, then take a quantity or part of the

said composition as much as you think good, which you shall make

yellow with Saffron, and thereof make round Bals like the yolks of

Egges, then take two wooden moulds in forme of Egges, and if you have

no moulds in stead thereof take the made yolkes of Egges, compassing

them about with the white composition, making them round like egges,

and so lay them in the dish, and they will shew like hard Egs without

shels, & tempering a little of that white stuffe with Rosewater and

Sugar, whote or cold as you thinke good, they will shew like curds.

And if you will use them dry cast none of that liquor upon them, but

in stead thereof cast Sugar beaten small.

Date: Tue, 17 Jun 2008 19:48:35 -0400

From: "Martha Oser"

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Almond Milk Cheese

To: sca-cooks at

If you cook the almond milk to reduce and thicken it, you can then pour it

onto a cotton towel (NOT terrycloth, but a smooth fabric like an

old-fashioned flour sack towel) on a plate, let it sit and it will set into

something like a very soft, very smooth cream cheese.

I did this once and was able to use the almond "cheese" instead of cream

cheese in a pear tart I made. Such almond-y flavor, with a smooth, light

mouth feel rather than the richer, heavier feel of cream cheese!

Date: Wed, 18 Jun 2008 13:40:20 -0400

From: ranvaig at

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Almond milk cheese

To: euriol at, Cooks within the SCA

<<< I was playing and reading on almond milk just last week. You should be able to take any cheese recipe and just substitute the almond milk for the amount of milk called for. One of the particular notes I recall, I think it was in The Art of Cookery in the Middle Ages, is that almond milk has a longer

shelf life than animal milk and so should the cheese and butter made from

it. >>>
We had left over almond milk from a feast we did, by morning it was rancid, curdled, and unusable. It got left at room temperature for two hours or so during the feast, but still looked and smelled ok when we put it away for the night. I really doubt that almond cheese would keep very well.

Date: Sat, 10 Apr 2010 21:24:24 -0700 (PDT)

From: wheezul at

To: sca-cooks at

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Almond Milk Cheese Redux
In reading through the list archives I see there was some debate if an

almond milk could be turned to a cheese via rennet.  The Wecker Cookbook

has a recipe for an almond milk cheese that uses rennet.  Did anyone

venture forth with some experimentation, or was the end of the

conversation merely theoretical?  I'm getting ready to try the Wecker

recipe (my transcription and early translation of it follow now)

Mehr von allerhand herzlicher Essen von z?ger/

Zuvor aber ein Mandelz?ger oder k??

Nimb klein gestossene Mandeln und brunenwasser / Mach ein gute

Mandelmilch/ dise henge uber dan fewer / r?hr sie bi? sie schier wil

anheben zu sieden / so thu ein wenig Lab oder Renne darein / also wolstu

sonst ein k?? machen / oder nimb Seidmilchen / hastu die auch nicht / nimb

Wine oder Essig / so vil genug zum ger?nnen / oder la? ihn inn ein

siedenden wasser uber nach stehen/ wie due eins hast / la? ih r?nnen wie

in k?? oder z?ger/ heb ihn dann vom fewer / stell ihn auff ein ring /

spreng mit der hand Frisch wasser darauff herumb/ decke ihn mit eim

weissen tuch/ wie sonst ein Eyerz?ger oder k??: bald heb ihn auch also

auff mit eim l?ffel / der vil l?cher hat / in k?rblein oder andern formen

/ wann das Mocken wol davon kompt / spreng Rosenwasser und Zucker darauff

/ wann es wol darein schleufft / so kehre es umb in ein saubere blatten /

darin du es f?rtragen wilt/ thu ihn wider also / wiltu/ so mach mit

Mandelmilch oder Rosenwasser/ oder sonst / eine gute br?h dar?ber. Diser

z?ger wirt sch?n wei?.
More on all kinds of hearty dishes of "quark"

Of the above but almond-quark or cheese

Take small ground almonds and well-water / make a good almond milk / these

hang over the fire / stir it until it nearly rises to a boil / so add a

bit of rennet (lab) or rennet (renne) therein/ as if you would make a

cheese / or take strained milk [buttermilk I think] / if you don?t have

also / take wine or vinegar / so much as is enough to make it runny / or

leave it standing in simmering water overnight standing / however you have

obtained it / let it drain like a cheese or quark / lift it then from the

fire / place it in a ring / sprinkle it by hand with fresh water theron

all around / cover it with a white cloth / as you do an egg-"quark" or

cheese / soon also lift it with a spoon / that has many holes / into a

basket or other small mold / when the whey has well come forth / sprinkle

rosewater and sugar on the top / when it has well-hardened therein / turn

it onto a clean plate / in which you want to serve it / do to it more as

well / if you want / so make it with almond milk or rose water / or

otherwise / a good brew over the top of it. This "quark" is a nice white.
I have bought some modern quark (I'd never tasted it) and am attempting to

use a buttermilk with the quark culture (one with rennet, one without) and

a milk culture with both rennet and quark culture.   They are all setting

nicely for a kitchen cheese play-date tomorrow.  But I'd like to try this

almond cheese.  I'll try my own almond milk, add rennet and as a security

measure a bit of buttermilk and see what happens.  I'd love to know if

anyone else actually attempted the almond cheese.
Katherine B

Date: Sun, 11 Apr 2010 09:49:02 -0400

From: Johnna Holloway

To: Cooks within the SCA

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Almond Milk Cheese Redux


Date: Sun, 11 Apr 2010 08:31:32 -0700 (PDT)

From: wheezul at

To: "Cooks within the SCA"

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Almond Milk Cheese Redux
I am pleased to report that I did successfully make a cheese like mass

using the instructions in the Wecker recipe.  In what was sort an Eureka

moment, I understood that the almond cheese wasn't made from the almond

milk, but from the almond solids although the preparation of the recipe

has a similarity to making almond milk.
Sometimes Anna Wecker calls for a thick almond milk, although she didn't

make that specification here.  I opted to go for a water/almond ratio of 2

to 1, mostly because the almonds were spendy and I didn't want to start

too thin.  I think it was about right from the outcome.  In my case I had

1 and 1/2 cups of blanched slivered almonds from the bulk bin section of

my grocery store and 3 cups of water.  I then put this all into my blender

and let it churn around on the highest setting for about a minute.  It

made a runny, about the consistency of cream, lovely white almond

suspension with a nice head of foam.
In my mind Anna's recipes seem to have been dictated, because I think they

follow like a cooking show script.  I had a moment of amusement when I

imagined that Anna was standing behind me dictating and then stopping to

watch the blender make short work of the almond milk creation process and

then imagined how she might have reacted with awe and immediate approval

at the efficiency of the machine.

Next I put the almond suspension into a pan and heated it on medium low

heat, stirring with a whisk constantly to avoid any hint of burning, until

the mass started to heave which was at 180 deg. F. on my thermometer.  I

took it off of the heat and added a tablet of rennet (junket - which was

all I had) and about a quarter cup of active culture buttermilk.  In

retrospect I don't think the buttermilk was necessary but I wasn't taking

chances after having bought the nuts, especially since the recipe said it

could be used in place of rennet (but not specifically in conjunction with

the rennet either - even though the recipe is pretty free-form).  It

seemed a cheap insurance policy since I had some on hand.

I left the pan on the lowest heat on my stove to set up but I think

perhaps I should have put it into the oven with the other quark cheese I

was making where I managed to keep the temperature at about 150 deg.

However, the nut mass did start to coagulate quickly  and after several

hours the liquid seemed to have somewhat settled out.  I didn't know if I

should have kept it in a mass for 8 or more hours like the other quarks,

or not, but I opted to drain it after about 3 hours because I didn't want

it to set a dried out skin before I drained it.

I used a large skimmer to spoon the mixture into my muslin cloth in a

strainer, but noted that it didn't separate like a normal curd - it just

got wetter at the bottom - so ended up just pouring the whole mass into

the cloth.  In the future I would probably drain the more watery part

separately and then add it to the main mass to save on pressing time and

hassle, but I don't think it would improve the final product any.  The

almond milk 'whey' tasted like a slightly sour weakish almond milk until I

started pressing hard on the muslin and a bit of the 'cheese' started to

extrude making the whey creamier.  All told there was only about a cup of

fluid, and this made more than a cup and a half of 'cheese'.

The end consistency of the almond 'cheese' is neat.  It has a curd like

crumble that very much resembles the quark I made as well as other green

cheeses and molded very nicely into a ball.  Anna specifies uses the word

z?ger (zu:ger) to describe quark, almond 'cheese' and egg-milk cheese.  I

think all of these make a final whitish more-or-less spreadable product

suitable for use in her other recipes that call for it.

The taste is creamy and almond flavoured.  I still need to finish it with

the called-for rosewater and sugar, but am waiting until later when I

serve it.  I think it would be excellent blended with cream and eggs in a

torte with sugar, raisins, cinnamon and some sugar.

Now I'm curious about the preparations that call for the zuger and adding

cream and/or butter to make it into a "Mayenmuss" - which I think is

supposed to simulate the rich consistency of milk products in May.
Katherine B

Date: Thu, 15 Apr 2010 10:05:14 -0400

From: Jennifer Lynn Johnson

To: Cooks within the SCA

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Almond Milk Cheese Redux
<<< I have been following this thread with some interest, because I have always

wondered if those almond milk cheeses would work out (I am similarly curious

about the 'custard' cheeses you see in some period recipes). I can't help

but wonder if the result is basically a thick almond paste, or if it really

is coagulated proteins coming out of the fat/oil that the almonds give off

during the process of grinding etc.

I'm also curious as to why rennet would have this effect - it is an enzyme

(or collection of enzymes) designed to digest animal milk, which is a

different set of proteins to almonds. I wonder if the coagulation is just

happening from the acidic ingredients, but the period writer thought that if

you wanted to make cheese you should put rennet in, so they put it in, but

it's not really doing anything?


(who has just enough chemistry to be confused) >>>

I have never had any luck with rennet, but I have only tried vegetable

rennet, animal rennet might act differently. Powdered calf's stomach would

have acid, and cause some coagulation that way. Some enzymes cross-react, I

don't know enough about rennet to know if it is possible, but I do know

enough to think it unlikely. (I work in a lab and have a science degree.)

But having an ingredient in a recipe that does not do what it claims in not

unlikely, in period or modernly.
I have also found that if one boils homemade almond milk the starches

convert and create a pudding-like item. This can be drained, and would

release some of the liquid from the starch-matrix. Some of these recipes

call for rose water, and claim that the rose water causes the turning. I

have not tried this. I think I need to make some rose water and check the

Acid coagulation creates curds that separate from the 'whey,' a much more

dairy cheese like product.
Both are called almond butter in period recipes. I can only recall recipes

being called almond cheese when they call for acid, but my memory is far

from perfect.
An example of acid process:

Butter and cheese made of almonds
This is an excerpt from Wel ende edelike spijse

(Dutch, late 15th c. - Christianne Muusers, trans.)

The original source can be found at Christianne Muusers's website

Butter and cheese made of almonds. Make good almond milk. Then let it boil

in a pan. Take good wine vinegar with a spoon, sparingly and little in all.

As soon the [almond] milk starts to curdle, pull the food backwards and take

a small basket with straw in it and a cloth upon it. Let your food cool on

it. Have a small cheese mould and mix sugar with the food in it. Make cheese

in the cheese mould and butter in the platter.

An example of "pudding"-process:

XI - Butter of fat of almonds (almond butter)
This is an excerpt from Libro di cucina / Libro per cuoco

(Italy, 14th/15th c. - Louise Smithson, trans.)

The original source can be found at Louise Smithson's website

XI - Butter of fat of almonds (almond butter). If you want to make butter of

almond fat to make dishes for Friday or for lent take three pounds of

almonds to make a tart or whatever dish that you want for 12 persons. And of

this butter you can put to flavor tartare (a sort of pie made of soaked

bread, almonds and sugar) or other pies. In that one does not eat meat, take

the almonds peeled and washed and well ground and stamped with clear water,

and when it has been well strained and pressed put this milk of almonds to

boil. And when it has well boiled throw it (put) over a white cloth. When

the water has strained below take good knife and scrape from the cloth and

put it above the "taiero" and put it in whatever dish you want.

An example of using rose-water to turn it:

To make Almond butter after the best and newest fashion
This is an excerpt from The Good Housewife's Jewell

(England, 1596)

The original source can be found at Chef Phains - Free Cookbooks

To make Almond butter after the best and newest fashion. Take a pound of

Almondes or more, and blanch them in colde water or in warme as you may have

leyfure, after the blanching let hem lye one houre in cold water, then stamp

them in faire cold water as fine as you can, then put your Almondes in a

cloth, and gather your cloth round up in your handes, and presse out the

juice as much as you can, if you thinke they be not small enough, beate them

again, and so get out milke so long as you can, then set it over the fire,

and when it is ready to seeth, put in a good quantitie of salte and

Rosewater that will turne it, after that si in, let it have one boyling, and

then take it from the fire, and cast it abroad upon a linnen cloth, and

underneath the cloth scrape of the Whay so long as it will runne, then put

the butter together into the middest of the cloth, binding the cloth

together, and let it hang so long as it will drop, then take peeces of Suger

so much as you thinke will make it sweete, and put thereto a little

rosewater, so much as will melte the Suger, and so much fine pouder of

Saffron as you thinke will colour it, then let both your suger and Saffron

steep together in the little quantitye of Rosewater, and with that season up

your butter when you wil make it.


writing from the Dominion of Myrkfaelinn

Date: Thu, 3 Jun 2010 08:45:38 -0700 (PDT)

From: Raphaella DiContini

To: Cooks within the SCA

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] cow butter?- Alternate butters, almond and

cheese butters
I just made the "butter fat of almonds" from the Anon. Venetian manuscript I've been working on blogging my way through. Here's the entry with step by step details on it, and lots of pictures:

The recipe before it that is currently on hold is a butter made of fresh cheese where you essentially make cheese then break down the milk fats to reconstitute them as "butter". It doesn't seem to specify what type of milk to use, so I'm going attempt to try at least both milk and goat as my friend Alienora makes amazing cheese and has a working produce and goat dairy farm.
X. Butiro de chaxi freschi, etc.

Se tu voy fare butiro de casi freschi per fare alchuna cossa, toy VI casi freschi apestati al pi? che tu poy, e quando eno ben pestati e destemperati con aqua freda chiara, el grasso tornar? disopra; toilo e ponilo sul tagliero, e poylo dare con quela vivanda che tu vole, e in torta che tu vole e star? bene.

X. Butter of fresh cheese, etc.

If you want to make butter of fresh cheese to make other things, take 6 fresh cheeses and mash them the most that you can, and when they are well mashed temper with clear cold water. The fat comes to the top, take and prick with with a knife, and then put it with what dish you want, and in tarts if you want it is good.


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