Cheese Making Recipe of the Month
Step into the world of Cheddar with this wonderful recipe we've been perfecting over the years.
In addition to making your own Cheddar, you'll learn why there are so many different varieties around the world and understand the history of this fantastic cheese.
Since we've tasted a lot of cheddar, and made many variations, we're able to give you our favorite recipe. It's the one we make ourselves, and the one Jim makes when you attend our 201 workshops. We hope you enjoy it as much as we do.
We Wish You a Very Happy New Year!
Left to right: Sarah, Angie, Kathy, Jeff, April, Mark, Jocelyn, Jeri, Mary and Ricki
Cheese Making Questions & Answers
I need help before waxing.
(Q) I made an Edam, and after brining it, I was letting it air dry as I usually do. This time, however, as it was drying, the rind got a little greasy which hasn't happened before. I was wondering what might be the problem and if I need to do anything to take care of that before waxing? It is a 3.5 lb wheel made with raw whole cow's milk.
(A) This is likely due to the changes in raw milk with the seasons. It could also be that you are drying it at a slightly too high temperature. Try lowering it a bit.
I need to use a fresh package of culture every time?
(Q) I have two Nigerian Dwarf goats who give high butterfat milk. My chevre turns out wonderfully every time; however, my buttermilk forms a solid mass in the jar! I follow the directions on the package of culture (C21) for temp, time, etc. so I am wondering what is the best way to adjust the directions for goat milk? Also, can I use some of the newly-made buttermilk to make a second batch, or do I need to use a fresh package of culture every time?
(A) The problem may be with the amount of natural bacteria already in your milk. Too much acid causes the protein to coagulate. This will vary through the year as the seasons change. It will also vary with the time between milking and making and with the way the milk is stored.Your controls will be:
1. Amount of bacteria you add
2. Ripening time
By adjusting these factors, you should be able to control the acidity of your milk. Your goal is to keep the milk from thickening to the curd forming state.
Regarding your second question, you should be able to use the buttermilk you make as a mother culture.
Now that I have a better setup, should I let it age much longer?
(Q) I am making Manchego for the 2nd time. The first time I let it age only a week but now that I have a better setup, I am going to let it age much longer.
It is in a plastic box, sitting on top of a piece of wood. When I started, I put a sponge and wet cloth in the box. But, the past few days I have noticed the humidity going very high. I took out the wet cloth. That didn't work. I took out the wet sponge and put in a smaller one. That didn't work, so I took the sponge out totally. There is nothing in the box except for the cheese and the thermostat. Still, the humidity is 89%. Could the cheese itself be giving off the humidity?
(A) Yes, the cheese itself will give off a lot of humidity, especially in the beginning and especially if it is a higher moisture cheese.
Is i normal to have blue mold growing on the surface of butterkäse?
(Q) I currently have a butterkäse cheese aging and I'm wondering if it's normal to have blue mold growing on the surface along with the Geotrichum Candidum. I wash the cheese in light brine every couple days but it's very persistent in coming back. Also, when I turned the cheese today, I noticed small yellowish spots growing on the surface of the cheese. The spots scrape off easily with the edge of a knife with no discoloration underneath. Is this normal? I also have those yellow spots and (shiny looking) blue mold on the havarti I am aging, along with some light gray-ish colored spots that also scrape off easily. I think the gray ones may mean the humidity is too high, but I was hoping you could provide some guidance.
(A) The yellowish spots are likely the coriniforms common in washed rind cheeses but they will grow on any cheese with a lot of moisture.Hence, also, the blue and black molds.
Either the cheese body is too moist or the aging space is too humid - perhaps both. It could also be caused by excessive washing and by not drying down between washes.
Have a cheese making question, we're here for you: firstname.lastname@example.org
Meet a Fellow Cheese Maker
Dianne Miller in Imnaha, Oregon
Dianne Miller and her husband, Sam, retired to the mountains of eastern Oregon 4 years ago. Their goal was to raise and sell Nubian dairy goats.
They have accomplished their goal and they are now breeding their goats for high protein and butterfat levels. The milk from their herd averages 4.4% butterfat!
In the process of all this, Dianne has learned to make cheese and butter with their excess milk. (That's her cream separator at work in the picture.)
News From Fellow Cheese Makers
It's a New Era in Pakistan
I attended a Christmas gala in Islamabad at the German embassy. The ambassador was dressed as Santa and we had people from different nations.
I was invited to this occasion by my German friend, Claus Euler who makes and sells wonderful German sourdough breads.
Our stall was the hit of the day and we sold out every piece. It was a reunion with my customers from France, Britain and various other countries.
I feel happy to tell you that cheese making is now my full time business. My team and I are busy making cheese and we consistently supply it to domestic and commercial customers in all the major cities. I have to build a cold storage within 1-2 months to meet the demand.
People are becoming aware of the difference between non-processed and processed cheese.
By the way, my cheddar, halloumi, buffalo mozzarella and cream cheese are best sellers and we are making raclette now as well.
The cheese we named "Cambrie Jerry" is suddenly recognized by the same cafe and I have 20 kg orders per month now (44 pounds). It resembles brick cheese and they are trying it on pizza.
Hopefully, in the coming years, FCM (Farmers Cheese Making) will be the largest artisan, non-processed cheese producer in the country. Many others are getting inspired and trying their hands at cheese. A few are selling at farmer's markets, too. Thus, an era of cheese making has started here in Pakistan.
Imran Saleh, Lahore, Pakistan
Please send your cheese making news & photos to: email@example.com