Good day To all fellow Cheese lovers and makers. My name is Van, My real name are very long Dutch origin. I am born and raised in South Africa and are fortunate to have a job that has taken me to places in the world that I would never have gone to. That said I am currently working in Saudi Arabia in the middle of the desert. We have built a very big Power station and are nearing the end of the project. So in a few months time I will be leaving for my next destiny India.
O yes Cheese, I have always been a big cheese eater and said many a time if some one wants’ to catch me in a trap cheese would the bait to use.
I have started making cheese about 3 months ago making the soft spreadable cream cheese, yogurt cheese, Feta cheese and queso blanco. Then came the time for trying the harder stuff. It was a battle to get the rennet into this country, now that may sound odd but believe me they are very strict and if the guy at customs have any doubt he will just take the stuff and you will never see it again. Argue and you just make trouble for your self. (Drug trafficking penalty by death)
I got my rennet and has made 5 semi hard/hard cheeses, (Basic hard cheese recipe from Mr. Fankhauser store bought whole milk).one every weekend. The first was a no no just because I did not now what to expect as far as the coagulation process is going, the Curd just pulverized when I started to stir it and was very fine. None the less I wanted to go through with the whole process to get to know what to expect in the future and to test my home built cheese press. Me and my wife had tested it after it came out of the press (One solid block but very brittle to the cut) we decided to mature it for a few weeks but it just crumbled away every time I handled it. Cheeses 2;3&4 came out quite good looking and are now in the maturing stage 21 October the first will be a month old and of course then it is testing time. I have managed to lay my hands on Camel milk (Store bought) 4 Dollars a liter, That was a fail and did not coagulate in 4 hrs. Why I don’t know because I followed the recipe as I did with the Cow milk and fresh yogurt as a starter culture, Well the good news is I now know when a cheese is not going to happen. This weekend I will be doing one more same recipe but want to add a handful of dried cranberries to the curd just for a little variation as I don’t have any fancy starter culture’s to try something different.
I think that is enough for a introduction.
PS. Because of the no alcohol laws in this country and being here for the last +5 Years I am making my own beer, wine and Sadiqu (local moonshine) Sadiqu is Arabic word for friend. Ha ha