Hi folks -
So, after my 2nd Cam attempt in October, I decided to try a different variation in the white mold world. In brief, I kept the make process from iratherfly's Cam recipe, but used the washing and aging sequence from Boofer's Reblochon recipe. Why did I do this? I guess after two Cam attempts that came out similar (not generally unpleasant, but too dry, no paste softening, some bitterness) I wanted to try something in a more stinky/washed rind direction. I kept the Cam make because I figured I was already having moisture loss problems, and needed to maximize my chances of getting something that didn't end up looking like a semi-hard cheese.
The biggest difference,though, is that we went with aging boxes within my mini-fridge. After having past success in getting the main fridge up to 80-85% RH, for some reason lately I cannot get it above 60% max. However, for this one the aging boxes have done a nice job of keeping it 83-87% which while not the ideal up to 95% is a big step in the right direction. However the temp has varied by up to 5 degrees depending on where the boxes are in the fridge, and I also was slow to get enough for all the cheeses. So the upshot is that the aging conditions have varied considerably among the 5 cheeses I got out of this 3.5 gallon batch.
Right now I am two and a half weeks in to maturing them, and their conditions range from almost no geo wrinkles all the way to major slipskin. B. Linens stink is strong (gf is not a fan and it is even getting to me, lol) and several of the cheeses are also expressing some ammonia smell. Current conditions are 48-52 degrees and 85% RH on average, I have been flipping and washing daily more or less for a week or so.
I will post the recipe, some pics and notes for more detail, but as usual I am eager to hear the feedback of this erudite group on my latest experiment!
2.5 Gallons Sky-Top Farms Whole Cow's Milk (8g fat/cup)
1.0 Gallons Sky-Top Farms Low Fat Cow's Milk (2 g fat/cup)
1 pkt C101 Mesophilic starter, lot #1211 (From N.E.C.)
1 pkt C20 Thermophilic starter (From N.E.C)
1/16 tsp C7 Geotrichum Candidum (1/64 tsp per 2 gal scaled up even more) (From N.E.C.)
1/16 tsp Brevibacterium Linens
1/8 tsp Flora Danica
1 tsp Liquid Rennet (animal), diluted in 1/2 cup water
1/2 tsp Calcium Chloride (approx ¼ tsp per 2 gallons of milk)
Raise milk to 88-90 degrees, add cultures
Target 30 min. ripening time or pH of 6.55
Add rennet and calcium chloride
Set for flocculation time x 2.5 total time (example: if 10 min floc, then 25 min total)
Cut curd into 1” squares, let rest for 5 minutes
Stir very gently, then let rest 5 minutes again
Ladle into molds and allow to settle under own weight.
Flip 1x per hour for 5 hours, let sit to approx 8 hrs total, then salt and put in 'cave'.