MOOS LETTER from
by Jim Wallace
WHATS NEW AT CHEESEMAKING.COM
With all the great new improvements and changes here at New England Cheese Making Supply, we are constantly trying to improve contact with our customers and keep folks current with what is happening here. This has evolved into a great News Letter that we are currently trying to get out to you on a much more frequent basis. You will find lots of new information on our website to help you become a better cheese maker, plus some very interesting feed back from others like yourself who like to share their excitement.
Take a look at our website for more details on:
- Detailed recipes to inspire
- How to tips to ease the learning curve
- Visits with cheese makers around the world
- Travels to see cheese being made in other parts of the world
- Plus much more
MILK IN THE NEW MILLENNIUM
What is it and has it changed from what we knew?
In the past few years a lot has happened to our milk supplies.
Many folks have written to us about milk that worked just fine a few years back that is now somewhat problematic for cheese making.
- What has happened to our milk supply?
- Why have these changes been made?
- What can we do about it for better cheese making?
"THE SURPRISING STORY OF MILK THROUGH THE AGES"
A food lover's guide to milk combines a culinary history that traces the popularity of milk in the human diet, the dietary applications of both fresh milk and fermented milk products, and the development of the modern-day dairy industry with more than 120 recipes from around the world.
Mendelson then takes us on a journey through the lands that traditionally only consumed milk fresh from the cow, what she calls the Northwestern Cow Belt (northern Europe, Great Britain, North America). She shows us how milk reached such prominence in our diet in the nineteenth century that it led to the current practice of over breeding cows and over processing dairy products. Her lucid explanation of the chemical intricacies of milk and the simple home experiments she encourages us to try are a revelation of how pure milk products should really taste.
368 pages, Hardcopy $27.95 order from our website
CHEESE TIPS FOR EWE
Making Butter? Rescuing moldy cheese? Heating milk?
Q. Can you tell me how to make cultured butter and what culture(s) I would use? When I lived in Florida we were able to purchase a Danish cultured butter There is no such thing here in Virginia.
A. Yes, adding a bit of our C101 culture to some fresh cream and let it ripen 4-12 hrs (depending on how much character you are looking for). Add 1/8 tsp to 1 qt of fresh cream and let it ripen at 72F then chill overnight. Your next step is to simply place it in the blender at a low speed (I use stir on mine) until the fat and whey (water) separates. Pour off the liquid and remove the solid butter to a clean bowl and fill with fresh cool water. With a wooden spoon knead the butter until the water is cloudy then pour off and add fresh cool water and repeat until the water remains clear. Add a pinch of salt as desired and form into your final shape. I find that just spinning it in the bowl works great.
Q. I tried to make cheddar, twice. Oops is all I can say. The first one molded badly and the second one was crumbly and now I find that it's molding too. I used the goat milk recipe. I may have let it come up to temp too fast towards the end. I am leaving it out to dry in the basement - bad idea? I so wanted to have some cheese for June 16th - our farm dedication, but this cheddar is kicking my backside. I do have all kinds of tupperware to put it in - is it the basement? Can I cure it in the tupperware? And, how soon after drying should I wax?
A. Mold is ever present and any cheese left to it's own coarse will develop a thick furry coat of mold. So, something needs to be done, either wax the cheese or spend the time to develop a natural rind. Waxing should be taking place within 3 -4 days of making the cheese so efforts need to be taken to get the surface to dry down a bit.
Now, for the cheese at hand, brush as much of that mold off as possible (outside) then wet the surface well with brine for about 10-15 min, then using a soft brush scrub the remaining molds away and let this dry off a bit. The cheese should clean up ok but may have a little discoloration left by the molds just wipe them off with a bit of vinegar and water and dry off again.
If you have a lot of openings in the surface mold will be harder to remove.
If you plan to use this soon a coat of olive oil rubbed in well will present a nice appearance.
Q. The most challenging part of cheese making for me is "raising the temperature" incrementally, according to each recipe. Are there any suggestions for controlling this aspect of the process? My curd seems to zoom up, sit and go nowhere, or, at the very least, has a rather ragged process. Surely, there must be something I'm missing. Would appreciate your suggestions.
A. The simplest method I have found to maintain temperatures is to start your day with a big kettle of water at the boil. This will also be useful for sanitizing instruments as you go as well as your cheese pot.
Pour your cold milk into the sanitized cheese pot and place the cheese pot in the sink. Then fill your sink with the hottest water you have from the tap. Stir your milk and watch the temperature. As the water bath cools add some of your boiling water to keep it up and try to keep it about 10-15F warmer than the target temp. As you approach the target temperature then reduce the temperature differential between the milk and water bath. The same thing applies to scalding or cooking the curds.
Ricki has been teaching cheese making classes for 30 years, her class is fun for all ages. This is an introductory class, a full day of Hands-On Cheese Making for beginners. Farmhouse Cheddar, Fromage Blanc, Creme Fraiche, Queso Blanco, Mascarpone, Whole Milk & Whey Ricottas and a 30 Minute Mozzarella!
Jim Wallace has been with us now a number of years teaching and answering our technical questions. Jim is an expert photographer, a great teacher and a wealth of knowledge. You will be delighted with his classes, although more technical in scope they are fine for the cheese maker who is starting out to learn more details of the process. Smaller than our 101 class which gives more time for individualized instructions.
We are keeping a list of Good Milks for cheese making and where you can find them in your area. Click here to view the listing and please feel free to let us know of any additions you have, thank you and enjoy.
NEWS FROM OUR CUSTOMERS
Send us Your Photos
We are very excited about our online Newsletter and love to get input from our readers. We all make this what it is today. So, keep sharing your stories and photos with us and we will post as many of them as we can. Please send to Ricki. If you have anything special you would like to see in future editions feel free to let us know, we will try our best to help you find what you need.