This cheese started out as a Not-Blue
, but I decided that it really didn't belong in the blue category, so for want of a better place to stick it, I'm putting it here. It will probably be somewhat of a washed rind anyway. This should be a creamy cheese with a low white Geo rind covering to protect it. Hopefully the blueberries will behave and not rot or otherwise destroy the cheese from within. Never been here before so I don't have any idea what to expect. If I make it back, I'll bring you all souvenirs.
This follows the same regimen as my Fourme d'Ambert #2
. I left out the LM057 because I didn't need to create spaces for the blue to grow since there is no PR being used.
I had a few questions going into this make, but unfortunately did not get sufficient feedback to proceed confidently. So I made my best guesses. I did receive some advice post-make which could be applied if I decide to try this endeavor again. Like a lot of the stuff that I post, it is here to help me down the road, but I hope it may persuade or dissuade other folks to try it or skip it, respectively.
Sailor suggested that I might have a problem with the acidity of the berries and that I might soak some and take a pH reading. I did that. The berries were quite acidic. Now what does that do to the cheese paste? I figured it must throw everything out of alignment so I figured I should soak and leach some of the acid from the berries. Over several hours (and overnight) I changed distilled water half a dozen times. When I figured that I had done enough, the berries still measured quite acidic. I rolled the dice.
I followed the FdA recipe and when it was time to fill the mould with curds, I first put in berry-free curds in the bottom. Then I sprinkled curds & berries in one layer, lightly salted, layered again, salted lightly, layered again, salted...until all the curds & berries were exhausted. Then I placed the final top layer of berry-free curd in the mould and pressed down gently so that all of the curds and berries were in the mould. With each layer of curds and berries I gently pressed them into the mould to try to eliminate air pockets. I used one tablespoon of salt with the layered curds & berries, knowing that the cheese would be brined as well.
Here's what I'm working with:
1 gallon Dungeness Valley whole raw milk
2 gallons Twin Brook Creamery whole creamline milk
1 pint Dungeness Valley raw cream
6 cubes Kazu MC (LL, LC, LD, LH), melted
1/16 tsp Geo 13
1/32 tsp KL71
1/2 tsp CACL
1/32 tsp Renco dry calf rennet
4 oz Mariani dried wild blueberries