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Ingredients:

  • 11 pints Ellie’s Dairy raw Goat milk
  • 2.5ml animal rennet
  • DVI starter
  • Penicillium candidum

I’ve been concentrating on cheddar-making now for a while, which although a lot of fun, takes quite a long time to produce results!

I decided it would be fun to make some quicker cheeses, which would ripen up in a couple of weeks rather than needing a year or so.

The make itself is also a lot simpler and less involved than a cheddar – a couple of hours work as opposed to 6-7 hours.

Excellent Ellie's Goat Milk

Excellent Ellie's Goat Milk

Barely filling the vat

Barely filling the vat

I only used a small quantity of milk, as the curd won’t be cut.  This pretty much doubles the volume of curd which will need to be ladelled out later – plus, this is all the milk Franklins had left on a Saturday afternoon!
Penicillium Candidum

Penicillium Candidum

I used Penicillium Candidum in preference to Penicillium Camemberti, as the Candidum seems to give a thinner, less leathery rind than the Camemberti.

Measuring out rennet

Measuring out rennet

Added a few grains of DVI starter and Penicillium Candidum to the milk at 32C, stirred and left for 30 minutes.

DVI needs a higher temperature than normal starter, which begins working at around 21C.

At this point, measure out the rennet and dilute in 5-6 times volume clean, cold water.

2.5ml rennet might seem quite a large amount for this volume of milk, but this is required to coagulate the milk in a reasonable time (1h30).

I’ve only noticed after making cheddar repeatedly, that I need to double the amount of rennet recommended in recipes in order to achieve a good coagulation time.

I suspect this is either down to my rennet being poor quality, or the recipe’s referencing the different strengths of their time / experience.

Mixing in the diluted rennet

Mixing in the diluted rennet

Add the diluted rennet to the milk, and stir for around 3-4 minutes.

Clean break

Clean break

After 1h30 the curd is sufficiently coagulated to give a clean break.

Notice swirly lines on the right hand side – not sure what causes these, but I notice them sometimes, usually when making soft cheese.

I suspect they may be down to insufficient stirring at renneting, or the quantity of water in dilution being too high.

It could also be that the curd has coagulated enough to actually start breaking away from itself … if anyone has other ideas, please let me know!

Ladelled into moulds

Ladelled into moulds

Curd is ladelled out without cutting, and allowed to drain naturally with just the follower on top for pressure.

7 hours in

7 hours in

After around 7 hours of draining, the curd should have reduced in height by about 2/3.

Flip the curd, making sure the bottom doesn’t end up resting in the drained whey.

Draining curd

Draining curd

Flip again the next day, at which point the curd should be pretty well drained, and almost be able to survive on it’s own outside the mould without collapsing.

Ready for salting

Ready for salting

After another 7-8 hours, remove the curd from the moulds and rub them with pure, fine salt.

For the 4 larger cheeses, I used 4g salt, whereas the smaller ones got 2g.

Curd surface

Curd surface

Dry off at 18C @ 70-80% humidity for a couple of days.

Wrapped up

Wrapped up

Wrap the cheese in wax paper to prevent the mould from growing too thick and from spreading to other cheeses!

Store at 10-12C @ 85-95% humidity, turning daily for 10-14 days.

8 days young

8 days young

Cut open

Cut open

After 8 days I decided to check out one of the smaller ones:

  • Outer appearance: consistent layer of thin, white mould without discolouration
  • Colour & texture: uniform natural white; open texture, breaks easily in one clean line
  • Consistency of body: soft; slightly chalky
  • Flavour & aroma: very clean; no mushroom flavour or acidic bite; a little low on salt; very mild
9 days old

9 days old

The next day, I tasted the same cheese, half of which had been sitting in my (actual) fridge, wrapped in wax paper.

What a transformation in just a day!  It may look pretty much the same, but the flavour and aroma had altered significantly from practically nothing to quite a fresh mushroom, reminiscent of a young Caerphilly!

10 days old

10 days old

Creamy inside

Creamy inside

Another day, another completely different cheese!  I opened one of the larger ones:

  • Outer appearance: roughly 1mm layer of white mould
  • Colour & texture: changes from slightly yellow at the edges, to white towards the centre; breaks cleanly
  • Consistency of body: rind gives slight resistance; creamy and soft below the rind; chalky towards the centre
  • Flavour & aroma: clean; subtle, warm flavour; no acidity or bite; no particular smell
 Can’t wait for tomorrow!
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