Cheese, Cheese and More Cheese

Cheese, Kim Chee, and other fermented or pickled foods.

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Postby Brewhockey » Wed Jul 07, 2004 7:25 pm

Equipment needs are pretty minimal. If you get a press, good quality cheese cloth and an accurate thermometer, you should be able to find all the additional equipment you need in your kitchen. You might want to consider a second, larger stock pot that your 1st pot will fit inside of. That way you can add heat to your cheese double boiler style and minimize the risk of scorching your milk. The site Selfors posted has some good step-by-step photo essays that should really help clear things up for you.

I'm glad you decided to do the more complicated cheeses "sooner or later" rather than jump right in to making hard or ripened cheese right away. That'd be a lot like jumping into all-grain on your first batch of beer. It isn't impossible but it definitly makes things harder. Trying a couple 1 gallon batches of cottage or mozzarella cheese to get a feel for how your ingredients act is a good idea.

A couple of unsolicited tips from my experience; 1-If using store bought homogenized milk, do NOT skip the calcium chloride. If you do, you'll get curds but they won't set as hard or quickly and the curds are harder to handle w/out falling apart in a pasty mess. 2-Using a gallon of 2% milk and adding a quart of heavy cream to it will make a smoother, creamier cheese than using a gallon of whole milk. I've found that a quart of heavy cream added to a gallon of whole milk is too much though. I ended up with a fatty, greasy cheese that wasn't very appealing.
Tom

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Postby grainbrew » Tue Feb 21, 2006 9:09 pm

I'm also looking into making some basic cheese with the prospect of eventually making some Gouda. There's a cheese farm nearby owned by a Dutchman and I can't seem to get enough of his old Gouda.

I'm trying to gather the basic equipment without spending too much. Is a press really necessary? Can a press be made a home?

J
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Postby Brewhockey » Wed Feb 22, 2006 10:56 am

If you want to make a hard cheese, a press is an absolute necessity. They're not hard to make though and if you hunt around the internet, you should be able to find plans or pick up enough ideas to be able to DIY one. The same rules apply to press materials as brewing equipment. You need to be able to sanitize anything that comes into contact with your cheese.
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Postby HotCookCpl » Tue Apr 24, 2007 8:51 am

These folks seem to have a lot of info.:

http://www.cheesemaking.com/

I haven't tried making cheese yet, but, since they close to home for me, they will be the first people I visit for equipment and info. I hope this helps.
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Postby Mark » Wed May 30, 2007 5:14 pm

I've found that the best Cheese Milk is to make 1.75 gal of milk from powdered dry milk and add a quart of whipping cream and a tsp of calcium chloride.

I'm currently working on Colby and have had two batches collapse once taken out of the press and left to dry. I didn't have this problem with the goudas I've made or the cheddar. I think the curd may have been rested at too low a temp prior to draining/salting/pressing.
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Postby HotCookCpl » Tue Jun 26, 2007 12:54 pm

My wife and I made our first batch of cheese this weekend. We got really good advice from Ricki Carroll's web site (see the link I posted previously). We just bought Ricki's book the other day and we're looking forward to making our next batch of cheese. From the research I've done it looks like Ricki really knows her cheese making. For info. and advice definately try her web site.

Good luck!
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