Fermented Milk Products from All Over the World •Lapte acru (Romania)
Laptele acru, also known as lapte prins, can be translated as sour milk, and it is a common dairy product that is consumed by almost any person in Romania. Laptele acru is obtained through milk acidification and lactic fermentation of lactose triggered by certain bacteria and can be consumed as it is or used, furthermore, for the making of cheese. Lapte acru can be consumed for breakfast, with bread and jam or honey, with cereals, with nuts and honey, or however you like it. It can also accompany a meat or cheese sandwich and other savory dishes, as it is refreshing, hydrating, and it promotes a good digestion. So, if you want to enjoy a light dinner, lapte acru can represent a great choice. It is also used when coking, as it is an ingredient for light soups in the summer, such as lettuce soup, which can be served cold, right out of the fridge, being very refreshing in the hot summer days.
The best part about lapte acru is that you can prepare it anytime you want. The best way to make lapte acru is with whole milk, bought from local farmers, as it makes the lapte acru thick, creamy, and with a pleasant sweet taste. You have to start by boiling the milk. Once the milk reaches its boiling point, turn down the heat and allow it to simmer for 15 more minutes. Then, turn off the heat and let it cool down. You will also need some sour cream to culture your milk. So, if you use 1.5 liters of fresh milk, you will need 3 tablespoons of sour cream. If possible, use a ceramic vessel to make lapte acru, although a glass container will also work. Take the sour cream and spread it across the container’s bottom and then pour the warm milk. Make sure for the milk to be warm, like summer rain, so not too hot or too cold, when you pour it into the container. Leave it in a warm spot to thicken. If the temperature is around 23 to 25 degrees Celsius, it is enough to leave it for 12 hours to ferment, as it will be enough. So the time depends on the temperature, being shorter if it is hotter than 25 degrees Celsius and more if it is below 23 degrees Celsius. When it is ready, the fat in the milk will form a thick layer of cream at the top of the container, which can be mixed with your lapte acru or used for cooking.