We’re back with a new recipe. Today we are going to share with you the recipe called Warangashi/Wagashi in Benin.
Wagashi is a cheese made from cow milk. This popular cheese comes from the north of Benin and is consumed throughout the country.
3 L of Milk ( more details at the end of the recipe )
6 tablespoons of vinegar
1 big pot
1 clean dish towel
1 heavy objet
(It will be very helpful to read the entire recipe before you try it)
Step 1: Curdle the milk
- Start by putting the pan on low heat and add the 3L of milk in the pan
- Let it boil
- After the milk starts to boil, remove from the heat (you can leave it in the pan or pour it into a large container)
- Then add the vinegar in three parts (2 tablespoons each time) Caution: do not pour all at once.
- Leave for about 5 minutes: you will notice that the milk starts to curdle
- Then mix it with a spoon
Step 2: The formation of Wagashi
- Pour the mix into a strainer
- Let the water go down (clear water)
- Once the water is completely down, flatten with your hand (don’t use too much force, do it lightly). Then use a clean dish cloth on this step, it will help absorbs the water more easily.
- Wait 10 mins and when you feel like one side of the cheese has taken the shape of the strainer, turn it over so that the other side also takes the same form (wait 10 minutes).
- Then remove the cheese from your dish towel and leave in the strainer.
Different suggestions on this step :
- Before you remove the dish cloth, you can put heavy objects over the cheese (example: a pan, bottles, cans etc. …) and let it spin overnight.
- You can also put it in the fridge for about 4 hours or overnight (with the heavy object).
- Or you can put it in the freezer for 1 hour.
Step 3 : Preparation of the cheese :
Here we have two options:
- You can cook it in boiling salted water for about 10 minutes or
- You can also steam it (in this case you have to make sure you add the salt on step 2 before your cheese is formed).
To finish, cut the wagashi in pieces ( in the form of your choice) then fry them
- You can replace the vinegar by lemon juice or the calotropis leaf procera (or sodom apple). This last method is the traditional method and these leaves are easily found in Africa.
- Also, the choice of milk is very important in this recipe:
Preferably use raw cow’s milk, which can be found in farms
- We did find alternatives milk for those who can’t find that raw cow’s milk:
For those who reside in France:
We recommend a single brand of milk that you can normally find in any supermarket:
The brand is called CANDIA just like on the picture below.
For those in Canada, we suggest these milks:
For our friends in Africa: it’s easier for you to find raw cow milk and we don’t have a specific brand, but you have a 99% chance of finding the right milk.
This cheese is eaten on its own (with a little chilli pepper for those who eat pepper) or it can also be used in your preparations like meat and fish.