- 18 pints (~10 litres) raw Friesian Holstein milk
- 4ml vegetarian rennet
Another delivery from Hook & Son, this time destined to become a Stilton-esque blue cheese!
After heating to 29C, a small amount of DVI starter along with some rehydrated Penicillium Roqueforti and Geotrichium Candidium was stirred in.
After 30 minutes, when the pH had dropped slightly from 6.5 to 6.4, added diulted rennet and stirred thoroughly, being sure to mix in the cream which had settled on top during the starting phase.
A clean break was achieved around 30 minutes later, with no measurable change in pH.
Cut the curd into large cubes first, then progressively smaller until the curd cubes are around the size of peas.
Stir gently a few times and leave to heal for about an hour, or until the curd has completely settled on the bottom – at this stage, the whey pH is 6.3.
Once the curds have settled, decant out as much whey as possible until you’re left with a solid curd mass.
Scoop out the curd into a cheesecloth lined tray or colander - the picture above doesn’t show the cheesecloth as I forgot it, which made it a massive pain to move the curd around!
Leave curds to drain in a warm (~24C) place.
Once the curd has drained, cut it into small pieces (milling), salt and mix.
Finally move the milled curd to clean moulds.
Place the moulds in a cool, humid environment (18C @ 80% humidity) to drain, turning daily.
After 5 days, the curd mass should have shrunk away from the sides of the moulds and can be removed.
Use a knife to smooth out the curd sides and fill in any surface gaps – this is called “rubbing up”.
Wrap the curd in wax paper (available from Moorlands) and place in a cool, humid environment (14C @ 80% humidity) for a few weeks until a rind has formed.
I’ll update this post with pictures as and when things occur, most notably the piercing which is always fun!
I’ve got high hopes for this blue – as long as I can maintain humidity it should turn out nice and tasty given the great milk source!
Update: unfortunately I wasn’t able to turn these for a few days, so one side ended up a bit more moist than the other, which has caused a few problems from which they’ll hopefully recover.
They’ve now been speared once and are maturing away nicely.