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Moos-Letter July, 2013

Moos-Letter July, 2013

Cheese Making Recipe of the Month

Derby Cheese with Sage

Green cheese! And, believe it or not, there is no food coloring involved. That beautiful color is from the sage infusion alone.

If you're just beginning to make cheese, here's your motivation to advance. Jim has rated this an intermediate level cheese.

Now is the perfect time of year to add fresh herbs from your garden (or the nearest farmer's market) to any cheese you love to make - soft or hard. Go ahead and take the plunge- the possibilities are endless!

Meet a Fellow Cheese Maker

Jackie Clower

Jackie's Camblu and Marinated Feta

First Prize!

I am here to let you know I made your recipe for Camblu...entered it in the San Diego, CA County Fair. Results: it not only took first, Best of Division, but stole the show with Best of Show!

I now am trying to top myself for next to make a Gouda cheese with coconut taste to it.
Jackie Clower, San Diego, California

If you have a recipe for making coconut gouda, send it to

Always the Whey

I don't like to waste anything, so some additional ways I re-purpose the whey are: to feed the septic system when I have let it get too old (lost in frig), but mostly our dairy goats love it and usually butt heads to see who gets to drink it first. For the dairy goats, I dilute it so everyone gets some and to minimize the risk of digestive upsets. The dogs are quite fond of it as well as the chickens and I serve it to them undiluted.

Marie Baumann, Brule, Wisconsin

News From Fellow Cheese Makers

Using Ewe's Milk

How do I convert your recipes? I have read a little and mostly it is working, but other things like your conversion of ricotta from ewe's milk - how do I get the original so I can use my ewe's milk - perhaps you can produce a sheep milk recipe book or should I? or other options like a collaboration? but that is getting ahead of the game.

How do I convert your recipes? - I have been cutting curds very large, reducing rennet and temps just 3-5 degrees F, and using lots and lots less weight. It seems to be working so far. Also, ewe's milk, mine at least, seem to make cheese without rennet and culture, but I think the taste is better with the starters.

River Elderholly, Jordon Creek Farm, Marblemount, Washington

Jim Wallace (our technical advisor) responded:

As in working with any raw milk, you will find that your milk works differently-even with other ewe's milk.

It is all about the solids and calcium balance. The percentage of solids in the milk varies depending on the time of lactation, so you can produce a variety of cheeses all suited to the different stages of lactation.

You can use slightly less rennet in ewe's milk than in cow's or goat's milk to make your milk set, due to the higher solids. It can also take less time to make a curd.

You'll get a greater of volume of curd using an equivalent amount of milk. You may not need to take the temperature as high in some cheese recipes with ewe's milk.

Milk from the last few weeks of lactation produces a wonderful creamy cheese high in butterfat. This milk is also great for your Brie style cheeses. Milk from earlier weeks of lactation is great for hard cheeses.

If you experiment, you will probably find that ewe's milk in any recipe will produce a delicious cheese though perhaps not exactly what you are accustomed to ... (probably better!)

Saag Paneer

The second in a 2 part series of "cheesy" recipes by cheese maker and cookbook author Maggie Parkinson of Renton, Washington

Last month, Maggie presented a tutorial showing us how to make professional quality pizza at home (click here). Her recipe included cream cheese in the tomato sauce and Mozzarella on the pizza. This month, Maggie has chosen to share her recipe for Saag Paneer, a popular Indian dish.

The cheese for this recipe is Paneer (Panir). It is one of the easiest cheeses to make and you will find it in our book, Home Cheese Making. Just in case you don't have the book, here's a summary of the process:

Directions for Making Paneer

  1. Heat 1 gallon of milk to a rolling boil, stirring often to prevent scorching.
  2. Reduce the heat to low and drizzle in 8 tablespoons of lemon juice or 2 teaspoons citric acid dissolved in 3/4 cup hot water.
  3. Remove from heat and stir gently until large curds form.
  4. When there is a clear separation of the curds from the whey, remove from the heat and let set for 10 minutes.
  5. Ladle the curds into a colander lined with butter muslin. Tie the corners of the muslin into a knot and hold the bag under a gentle stream of lukewarm water for 5-10 seconds to rinse off the excess lemon juice or citric acid. Gently twist the top of the muslin to squeeze out the excess whey.
  6. Hang the bag of curds to drain for 2-3 hours, or return the muslin covered curds to the colander and press under a 5 pound weight for 2 hours.
  7. Eat it right away or store in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. Yield: 1 3/4 - 2 pounds

Please send your cheese making news & photos to: