Author Topic: Farmhouse Cheddar - raw milk and P/H blend  (Read 1972 times)

Offline dthelmers

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Farmhouse Cheddar - raw milk and P/H blend
« on: July 02, 2011, 10:32:14 PM »
Since seeing Pav's recipe at the Washington Cheese Guild site for fresh cheddar curd,
http://wacheese.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=80:fresh-cheddar-curd-extended-shelf-life&catid=43:moderate-cook-temp&Itemid=66
I've been experimenting with pre-ripening pasteurized homogenized milk and making a basic cheddar. Following advice from this forum, I tried using a gallon of local pasture fed Jersey milk to three gallons of cheap store  bought milk. I've made this cheese six or so times before with just P/H milk, and it was definitely eatable. Today I opened the first one I made with the 1:3 mix of raw to P/H milk. The make calls for pre-ripening the milk for about three hours with MM100, then adding Streptococcus Thermophilus and proceeding as for a thermo culture. My hope was that the long pre-ripening time would provide an environment where the native NSLABs would replicate into the P/H milk and make up for its deficits. the cheese I cut into today was one day short of three weeks old, and it met with great enthusiasm with the extended family. Two pounds disappeared in two hours. My family may be prejudiced in my favor, but friends of my niece and husband, who didn't know it was home made cheese, were raving about it.
This was a big success, and I owe it to the great advice and guidance I've gotten from this forum.
Pav, you made a lot of people you don't even know pretty happy today. Thank you.
Here's the make, and a picture.

FARMHOUSE CHEDDAR

1 Gallon of raw Jersey milk
3 gallons of P/H milk
¼ teaspoon MM100 or Flora Danica
¼ teaspoon of Streptococcus Thermophilus
1 teaspoon of liquid calf rennet dissolved in 1/2 cup of cold filtered water
1 teaspoon of calcium chloride (if using pasteurized homogenized milk)
2 tablespoons of kosher salt

Heat the milk to 76ºF and add MM100
Let ripen to pH 6.4, about 3 hours. It will smell buttery.
Increase temperature to 92ºF and add S. Thermophilus. Let ripen for a half hour.
Dilute the rennet and stir in for 30 seconds, about fifteen up and down strokes with a strainer.
If using the flocculation method, the multiplier is 3. Otherwise, check for a clean break at 30 minutes.
Cut the curd into 3/8” cubes and let rest for 10 minutes.
Heat to 102ºF taking 20 minutes to do it, stirring very gently at first, then more thoroughly as the curd hardens and shrinks.
Target drain is pH 6.0. If you’re not using a pH meter, this is when the curd really wants to mat and feels more solid, like well cooked scrambled eggs.
Drain through cheese cloth in a colander, lifting, turning and pressing the curd to get whey to flow out.
Gather up the corners of the cheese cloth and put in a mold and press at about 2 psi (light to medium pressure) for one hour.
Take out of the mold and tear into olive sized pieces. Toss with the salt, and place back in the mold and press at about 3.5 psi (heavy) over night.
Let air dry, turning over twice a day for several days until the surface feels like a clammy handshake.
Age in the cheese cave. Tastes OK at one week, better at two, better texture at 3.

The flavor of the raw milk came through loud and clear: a complex cheddar flavor, the texture just about exactly like Cabot from Vermont. How well does it age? we may never know. I vacuum sealed 1/2, but the other half is already gone, and the poor cheese may not last the weekend. I'll start another tomorrow, and try to get another going on Monday, and then my little dorm fridge/cheese cave will be full again.
Dave in CT
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Offline linuxboy

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Re: Farmhouse Cheddar - raw milk and P/H blend
« Reply #1 on: July 03, 2011, 02:34:41 AM »
Awesome; I'm thrilled for your success. When I invented this cheese based on the research done in Canada, I was similarly excited. If you want a tad more flavor when you are eating it young, add a pinch of thermo C (don't use LH100, wrong application) when you add the meso. No change to anything else. Bulk equivalent .02-.04%.

I meant this cheese to be a very solid foundation for commercial creameries to develop a signature product that they could sell easily and make a great profit, or for hobbyists who want a solid, fast-aging starter cheese as an alternative to tomme. Done in a pure leuconostoc+ TA, it makes for awesome poutine.
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Offline Tomer1

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Re: Farmhouse Cheddar - raw milk and P/H blend
« Reply #2 on: July 03, 2011, 07:04:28 AM »
Wow, thats the longest ripening time I have ever seen.  whats the science behind it?
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Offline dthelmers

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Re: Farmhouse Cheddar - raw milk and P/H blend
« Reply #3 on: July 03, 2011, 08:18:30 AM »
This is my understanding, Pav please correct me if I'm wrong.
By building a huge population of diacetylactis, I'm not only getting the buttery flavor, but they are consuming citrate, which will give a less acidic mouth feel. As this is really a thermo cheese, this population get killed off during the thermo stage, leaving plenty of material to break down the peptides into smaller peptides after the rennet and S. Thermophilus have broken the proteins into larger peptides with 6-10 amino acids, which taste bitter. My understanding is that the enzymes present from the remains of the meso population will break these bitter peptides into smaller savory and sweet peptides, and into individual amino acids. Since the long ripening built such a huge population, and then we set it back by raising the temperature, we have a lot of material to work on this stage of proteolysis. Also, with this cheese the long ripening time allowed the NSLABs from the single gallon of raw milk to repopulate into the entire batch.
Dave in CT
Dave in CT

Offline dthelmers

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Re: Farmhouse Cheddar - raw milk and P/H blend
« Reply #4 on: July 11, 2011, 11:00:41 AM »
Follow up on this: the day after I made this cheddar, I made a Caerphilly with one gallon of raw jersey milk to three gallons of p/h milk. Aged it four weeks and opened it yesterday. It is a big flavor improvement over the other Caerphillys that I have made with all p/h milk. The flavor is quite complex. I used the recipe from 200 Easy Cheese Recipes, which, IIRC, used a 45 minute ripening time, so the NSLABs had time to grow, and apparently did. This keeps my cost down, while giving me a much better cheese. As soon as I am able, I will make another one with the 3:1 p/h to raw, and the next day with all raw, and then compare them side by side in blind taste tests.
Dave in CT
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Offline linuxboy

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Re: Farmhouse Cheddar - raw milk and P/H blend
« Reply #5 on: July 11, 2011, 11:34:02 AM »
Quote
so the NSLABs had time to grow, and apparently did
Mesos did, thermos did not. And with cheddar family cheeses, most of the time, thermos contribute most of the flavor. But the milk makes a huge difference.

Quote
As this is really a thermo cheese, this population get killed off during the thermo stage
My version is not a thermo cheese. It's a normal meso make. Strep thermophilus salivarius to me is it's own beast. It's a cocci, like mesos, that operates at a wide temp range, spanning the middle of both meso (lactococcus) and thermo (lactobacillus) makes. The entire nomenclature of thermophilic and mesophilic cheeses and bacteria that is used in the industry is misleading. It reflects tradition and cheese differentiation more than any sort of genetic or scientific taxonomy that could be more useful for cheesemaking.

Quote
this population get killed off during the thermo stage,
Not in my make. Lysis happens due to time, not temp in my design.
Quote
leaving plenty of material to break down the peptides into smaller peptides after the rennet and S. Thermophilus
Opposite order. Proteases from rennet typically come after primary proteolysis due to protein hydrolysis.
Quote
have broken the proteins into larger peptides with 6-10 amino acids, which taste bitter.
They do not taste bitter per se. Only very specific hydrophobic chains, like b-casein terminals, are bitter because the sensory threshold is so high. The vast majority during normal proteolysis form really pleasant peptides.

Quote
we have a lot of material to work on this stage of proteolysis.
This part is spot on :). Both texturally, diacetylactics tend to have more EPS properties, and in terms of sheer numbers.

Quote
Also, with this cheese the long ripening time allowed the NSLABs from the single gallon of raw milk to repopulate into the entire batch.
Only in terms of distribution. NSLABs almost always refer to bacilli because mesos that lyse quickly and do not contribute to acidity, generally cannot compete and do not form a large part of ambient flora in make rooms. Bacilli do not grow at normal meso temps, they just hang out. Bacilli, such as plantarum, helveticus, delbrueki, etc start multiplying and growing in the cheese after the make, during maturation. They can survive for many, many months, slowly multiplying and lysing.
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Offline Boofer

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Re: Farmhouse Cheddar - raw milk and P/H blend
« Reply #6 on: July 11, 2011, 10:21:56 PM »
Congrats, Dave. That motivates me to give it a try. It's good to hear too that the 3:1 mix is successful for you.

Wow, thats the longest ripening time I have ever seen.  whats the science behind it?
Three hours is pretty typical for most of my cheeses in order to reach the proper rennet pitch point. Just waiting for the pH to drop...that's the science I see.

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Offline Walkermsa

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Re: Farmhouse Cheddar - raw milk and P/H blend
« Reply #7 on: November 19, 2012, 02:55:57 PM »
Hey guys,

First time post on this forum! I gave this cheese a go over the weekend, so far looking good! Thanks for the recipe guys! I have previously made a few batches of Farmhouse cheddar and they have been very hit and miss - I think partly because I was still learning the correct timings/techniques and the cave I was using (basement) was just too inconsistent with temparature.

I just purchased a small wine fridge which seems more regular but i'll guess we'll see.

I have one question, did you wax or vacuum seal this cheese?

If not, do you think that the fan in the wine fridge will dry the cheese out? I have been working on getting the humidity up with some water and sponges in their, but its hanging around the 70-80% range, which I think is a little too low.

Thoughts?

Thanks,

Morgan

Offline bbracken677

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Re: Farmhouse Cheddar - raw milk and P/H blend
« Reply #8 on: November 19, 2012, 03:38:11 PM »
You can wax or vacuum bag your cheese...or you can place it in what is referred to as a "mini-cave".  This is a plastic food grade container that you can set the top on loosely, or off center to achieve the desired humidity level. I usually leave my cheddars in the mini-cave for a couple weeks or so before bagging them.
I believe for your cheese you will want something 85ish% RH.
Here in North central Texas, the lid has to be cracked just a bit to make 85% (or rather, almost closed). In a more humid environment, you may need to leave it more open.

Offline H-K-J

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Re: Farmhouse Cheddar - raw milk and P/H blend
« Reply #9 on: November 19, 2012, 04:55:14 PM »
I also made this cheddar a week or so ago and vac- bagged on the sixth day, never tried to wax anything yet from what I have read I really don't need that mess in my itty-bitty kitchen ???
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Offline JeffHamm

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Re: Farmhouse Cheddar - raw milk and P/H blend
« Reply #10 on: November 20, 2012, 12:25:00 AM »
Hi Morgan,

Welcome to the board.

Check out the Warehouse for those plastic boxes with the snap lids.  They work great for "mini-caves".  I can age two 15 cm diameter cheeses in one (which are my usual ones) and could get 5 boxes in my cave (although I usually only have 3 in there as the other two shelves are used for waxed cheeses, which don't need to be in a box.

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