The Answer’s in the Oil

Fried Cottage Cheese 2 (500 x 332)

I’ll fucking fry it.

Of course that is what I should be doing with my leftover cottage cheese.

After my recent discovery of this cheese curd mixture, or whatever cottage cheese is, I became obsessed with figuring out ways to use it. My first attempt — a cottage cheese sandwich — tasted fine. It was simple, but fairly original (according to those with cottage cheese histories).

But I then had a tub of that leftover. It was too tangy to eat by the spoonful so I had to disguise it. I flirted with many recipes: enchiladas, kugel, or simple scrambled eggs. But I wanted something fun. Something I could create with the ingredients already in my apartment.

Oil! I always have oil. I also had the blackest black (sounds like a mascara, huh?) plantains that I immediately had to fry or else throw out. I pretended the cottage cheese was queso fresco and warmed up some oil.

Fried Cottage Cheese 1 (500 x 332)

Fried Cottage Cheese Coins

When I scanned the enchilada recipe, I noticed their treatment of the cottage cheese, and I duly copied. I dumped the cottage cheese in a colander, rinsed it with cold water and all of the slime washed away, and then I let it drain for about 45 minutes. I tasted the curds and they were suddenly much better than before – less tangy, the hint of saltiness came through, and did I mention the sliminess was gone.

When the curds were aired out, I mixed them with cilantro (and the chopped stems), scallions, cumin, cayenne, kosher salt, freshly ground pepper, two spoonfuls of flour and a beaten egg. I formed the mixture into small patties, then smooshed panko (seasoned with s&p) onto the patties. I let the patties sit for 20 minutes to adhere a bit, then dropped them into hot (canola) oil and fried for a few minutes, until crisp and tan.

Our dinner that night happened to be a fucked up affair of fried plantains, fried cottage cheese and a side salad with Seedy Mayo Mustard Dressing.

I also made a dipping sauce for the fried goodies: sour cream, crumbled feta, cayenne, scallions, garlic powder, lime juice, salt and pepper.

(PS–this could so be Super Bowl worthy)

More: appetizer recipes

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  • LC February 2, 2010  

    I was wondering how you were going to get the plantains in there. This sounds great. I wonder if there is a way to skip the rinsing draining step to just have the curds. I know the point was to use the cottage cheese but can you just buy the curds? Or make them?

  • dad gansie February 2, 2010  

    Interesting. How’d you evev think of rinsing the curds. I guess the cottage is the slimmy part
    anyway straight cot cheese is good. Add some cuecumbef s&p
    not bad a way my dad and opa had it for many years

    let’s try some on next visit home it’s ok for Passover right less flour

  • gansie February 2, 2010  

    can you buy curds outside of the midwest?

  • gansie February 3, 2010  

    okay, i have a curds update.
    from my mid-western friend, MC:

    You can indeed by cheese curds from outside the midwest
    I would recommend

    I went to simon’s cheese while home. I shipped a package including curds, to virginia, and by the time they were received they were still squeaky (this means they are fresh).

    Simon’s has great quality, however not many flavors of curds. You may want to pay a little extra somewhere else for the specialty ones, but i say go here first.

  • BS February 3, 2010  

    In researching an epic cheese story that will post on ES tomorrow (hype alert!) I came across this Maine creamery that sells four kinds of cheese curds:

  • Nicky February 4, 2010  

    Recently I saw a soup recipe with parsley dumplings made with cottage cheese and thought of your adventures with cottage cheese. I thought it might be something you would like to try – here’s the link –
    The technique sounds quite similar to your fried cottage cheese.

    Good to see you have found something to get you back in the kitchen.

  • LC February 5, 2010  

    eating Nancy’s CC with egg noodles right now, avec slime. Delish. But I look forward to pursuing the curd links.

  • Mahendra August 11, 2015  

    Umm like cottage ceeshe Give me a gallon of milk and I will make for you 2 lbs of fresh organic cottage ceeshe. I think its pretty good actually.

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