Author Topic: Wouldn't Set  (Read 234 times)

Offline Gobae

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Wouldn't Set
« on: June 01, 2015, 07:11:54 AM »
Over the weekend I tried the roquefort recipe from "Artisan Cheese Making At Home". It calls for 2 quarts milk and 2 quarts cream for which I used raw goat's milk and (not ultra) pasteurized cream.  The cream was from a local creamery, no stabilizers or junk. Everything looked like it was going great, I hit all the target temps and it started to set quite quickly. But when I came back after 2 hours to cut the curds I couldn't get a clean break and the whole gallon was the consistency of yogurt/sour cream. I let it sit another hour, but no change.

The only deviation I made from the recipe was that I omitted the calcium chloride because it said it wasn't needed if using raw milk. But should I have used it anyway since only the milk was raw and the cream was pasteurized? Is there something else I should consider modifying?

Offline John@PC

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Re: Wouldn't Set
« Reply #1 on: June 03, 2015, 07:40:51 AM »
I use low-temp pasteurized milk often without CaCl2.  Only problem I encountered with soft curds was when I used some "pretty-much-dead" culture.   Then again it may not be a bad idea to add the calcium chloride just for insurance?

Offline awakephd

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Re: Wouldn't Set
« Reply #2 on: June 03, 2015, 08:22:32 AM »
I have absolutely no idea if this is an issue, but ... I wonder if that much butterfat causes issues with setting. I've never seen a recipe call for half cream and half milk ... but then, I lead a sheltered life ... :)
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Offline Gobae

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Re: Wouldn't Set
« Reply #3 on: June 03, 2015, 11:16:59 AM »
I have absolutely no idea if this is an issue, but ... I wonder if that much butterfat causes issues with setting. I've never seen a recipe call for half cream and half milk ... but then, I lead a sheltered life ... :)

That's kinda what I was wondering too; if it need something else altered for that much cream.

Offline Gobae

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Re: Wouldn't Set
« Reply #4 on: June 03, 2015, 11:19:59 AM »
I use low-temp pasteurized milk often without CaCl2.  Only problem I encountered with soft curds was when I used some "pretty-much-dead" culture.   Then again it may not be a bad idea to add the calcium chloride just for insurance?

The culture (MA4001) was just purchased from thecheesemaker.com Haven't used it for anything else though so I don't know if it really is good.

Offline Gobae

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Re: Wouldn't Set
« Reply #5 on: June 15, 2015, 07:08:15 AM »
Just a quick update. I took utilized all the suggestions and followed the recipe 100%; including the rehydration instructions. The curds were slightly more solid at the top (showed a clean break), but when I attempted to stir them they broke apart into mush. Waited another 3 hours, but no change. Over all it had the consistency of yogurt. :(

I may try a different roquefort recipe, this one is the only one that calls for 50/50 milk/cream.

Offline jmason

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Re: Wouldn't Set
« Reply #6 on: June 15, 2015, 10:00:36 AM »
When rennet sets milk, the fat globules are held in the agglomerated micellin matrix.  So my guess as to what was happening.
1. That much fat contained within the matrix didn't allow for a strong matrix to form, kind of stretched to the max if you can picture that.  This would make the resulting curds very soft/fragile.
2. You didn't mention if the cream was homogenized or not, if so this would result in smaller globules that would initially be held in the matrix but would escape upon stirring leaving behind a matrix that just fell to pieces after you began to stir.

I am gonna guess that although you didn't say so that your whey before cutting was reasonably yellow/greenish clear, and that after stirring, which in this cheese would have had to have been unbelievably gentle, it became quite milky.  This would have been a result of all that fat escaping the matrix into the whey.

Kind of surprised by this recipe.  Caldwell is normally spot on.  Are you sure she called for heavy cream and not light cream?

John
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Offline Gobae

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Re: Wouldn't Set
« Reply #7 on: June 15, 2015, 12:44:19 PM »
2. You didn't mention if the cream was homogenized or not, if so this would result in smaller globules that would initially be held in the matrix but would escape upon stirring leaving behind a matrix that just fell to pieces after you began to stir.

The cream did not specify if it was homogenized or not, only that it was pasteurized. It's entirely possible that it was not homogenized because it was from a local dairy (Battenkill Creamery) that offers "cream top" milk and other non-homogenized products.

Quote
Kind of surprised by this recipe.  Caldwell is normally spot on.  Are you sure she called for heavy cream and not light cream?

I will double check the recipe when I get home, but I don't think Caldwell specified either, but instead just said "cream".

Offline qdog1955

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Re: Wouldn't Set
« Reply #8 on: June 15, 2015, 02:12:13 PM »
The Caldwell recipe I have, calls for high fat milk and states that 6 % fat is best.
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Offline Gobae

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Re: Wouldn't Set
« Reply #9 on: June 15, 2015, 05:28:57 PM »
Ok, it looks like a couple of things have gotten confused during this thread (my self included :) ).

The recipe is from "Artisan Cheese Making at Home" (pgs 188-89) by Mary Karlin, NOT Caldwell's book. Also the recipe does specifically call for heavy cream; 2 quarts milk + 2 quarts heavy cream.

Now, to jmason's points about fat being held in an agglomerated micellin matrix. Can the matrix retention be increased with more rennet? Or is there nothing that can be done if there's too much cream/fat?

Offline jmason

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Re: Wouldn't Set
« Reply #10 on: June 15, 2015, 08:19:41 PM »
To a point yes, and as I understand it, to a point the increased fat will actually speed the set.  But that is a lot of fat to try hold onto.  It is important to understand that rennet is an enzyme and as such catalyzes a reaction but is not consumed during that reaction, they will eventually degrade but a small amount can do a lot, more won't nessesarily do more it will just do it faster all things being equal.  I Just looked at the recipe, and yes she does call for equal parts milk and HEAVY CREAM, wow.  I must have looked at that recipe 20 times and not noticed that.  She does call for a 2 hour rennet set time before cutting, and a 15 minute rest after, she even calls for a gentle stir, GENTLE AND BRIEF might have been better to emphasize the fragility of this make.  Truthfully I don't know if I would be brave enough to try this make, if I did I wouldn't cut the curd and I wouldn't stir, at all.  I would spoon/ladle out and gently lay the curds in the mold the way some stilton makers do and let the cheese tighten up on it's own time, only attempting the first turning after it seemed to really firm up.  I would also double up on the cal chlor, with goats milk maybe go to 3/4 tsp.  People rave about the fat and solids content of goats milk but all the assays I have seen show it quite similar to cows milk, some goat breeds are supposed to give richer milk but most do not.  Sheep's milk on the other hand is truly rich and that is what the original roquefort is made from.  Sheep's milk is also naturally homogenized.  But in no way do sheep give milk that would come close to the fat content of this make.  I've used Mary's recipes as inspiration if not actually followed the recipe but this one is a bit weird in my view.  Maybe it can be made but as you found out, it aint an easy one.  Sorry you had bad luck with this. 

Out of curiosity, was I right about the whey getting milky when you cut and stirred, and did it never clear up again?

John
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Offline jmason

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Re: Wouldn't Set
« Reply #11 on: June 15, 2015, 08:35:38 PM »
This is a link to a video that really graphically shows some of what is going on in the rennet set.  Linuxboy originally posted a link to this and it is very helpful to understand the primary phase of coagulation.

http://video.chr-hansen.com/enzymes-for-cheese-chy-max-m-coagulant#.VX98jflViko
« Last Edit: June 16, 2015, 12:08:42 AM by jmason »
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Offline Boofer

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Re: Wouldn't Set
« Reply #12 on: June 15, 2015, 10:03:42 PM »
This is a link to a video
Where are you, you rascally link...?  ;)

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Offline jmason

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Offline Gobae

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Re: Wouldn't Set
« Reply #14 on: June 16, 2015, 06:30:15 AM »
Out of curiosity, was I right about the whey getting milky when you cut and stirred, and did it never clear up again?

Correct. Although, there never was much whey showing. The "clean break" divot did fill in with some clear-yellow whey; but when I cut it, it "bled" milk along the cut lines. Stirring did release some more whey but mostly just turned the whey more milky. Supposedly after waiting 15 min after the cuts and another 15 after stirring, the curd should have sunk to the bottom. But I waited an additional 3 hours and nothing happened. It was just one big mushy mess.