Author Topic: Epoisses make 1/3/13  (Read 1646 times)

Offline mgasparotto

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Epoisses make 1/3/13
« on: January 27, 2013, 04:06:56 PM »
Finally getting around to posting photos and notes from my epoisses batch started at the beginning of the month. I don't want to jinx it, but everything is going very well so far! PLA was added to the wash brine, not the make. They'll continue to get twice weekly washes in brandy until the beginning of Feb, when they should be ready.

Epoisses 1/3/13

1 gal whole pasteurized organic milk from trader joes
1/4 tsp calc chloride
1/8 tsp MM100
1/16 rennet tablet

Followed recipe in artisan cheesemaking book by Mary Karlin, omitting b linens (added to wash)
86 degrees ripen 30 min, add rennet and calc chloride, clean break at 3 hours (Should have waited overnight at least. Oh well!)
Cut into 1/2" cubes, spoon into 2 Camembert molds

Turn in mold every 2 hr after curd sinks to half orig level. Continue turning for 24 hours

Salt 1 tsp each cheese

Dry 18 hours

Ripening box, age 55 degrees (my fridge is usually 50) Flip daily

After 3 days, turn and begin 3% brine washing schedule
-Started 1/9/13 - -> 1/2c water, 1tsp salt, pinch of PLA, sprayed on
Again on 1/12/13. Also spot cleaned a couple blue mold growths (very tiny) w mix of water, salt and vinegar before spraying w brine and PLA. Washed ripening containers and returned cheeses to cave.
Again on 1/16

After 1 week of brining, begin washing schedyle w 50/50 brandy/water solution.

First cognac wash on 1/19 (cheese smells soooo good. Sweet, fruity and stinky) cognac is French made from champagne grapes. Cheeses are sticky with good growth of linens and spots of geo. geo spots prone to blue growths, so some were removed, many spot cleaned with vinegar/salt/water. Portions of cheese under geo are gooey. Cheeses feeling soft under rind.

Next wash on 1/22. Very little blue growth, light vinegar, salt, water solution as needed, followed by generous 50/50 cognac/water wash.

1/25 Washed w 75/25 cognac/water.  One very small blue spot on one cheese, nothing else. One cheese looking like it might have small case of slip skin on one 1/2" portion of top rind edge. Otherwise fine.

1/26 wiped moisture from insides of both ripening boxes. Cheeses no longer sticky, nice crinkly
Geo surface, great linens color and aroma. Interior starting to soften.


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Offline Boofer

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Re: Epoisses make 1/3/13
« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2013, 08:11:05 AM »
They look very nice so far. Will you put them into a bowl or box of some sort to support the sides as it ripens? Seems like they would collapse if you don't.

Nice pics. :)

-Boofer-
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Offline hoeklijn

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Re: Epoisses make 1/3/13
« Reply #2 on: January 28, 2013, 01:01:21 PM »
I'm very curious about how this will work out. Epoisses is one of my favourites but I never made it myself....
But I think Boofer is right and you have to support them somehow.
- Herman -

Offline mgasparotto

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Re: Epoisses make 1/3/13
« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2013, 01:45:02 PM »
Thanks, guys. Yes, I'm planning to put them in wooden boxes or ceramic crocks for the last week of their ripening. Any suggestions for places to order boxes would be welcome. The cheeses are camembert sized.

Herman -- This been a great experience to make. And they're pretty maintenance-free once you've killed off any remaining undesired surface molds with the brandy. The top sides never knit together as well as the bottoms, but that hasn't turned out to be a problem at all because the geo just knits it all together anyway. I'm just hoping they taste as good as they smell!

Offline Boofer

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Re: Epoisses make 1/3/13
« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2013, 06:19:36 PM »
Send a PM to iratherfly. He may be able to help. Otherwise, The Cheesemaker has Cam boxes.

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Offline mgasparotto

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Re: Epoisses make 1/3/13
« Reply #5 on: February 03, 2013, 10:31:02 AM »
Just an update on the epoisses style cheeses I made last month. They're looking great and ripening on schedule. I ordered some cam boxes that should arrive tomorrow, and not a day too soon. This batch has two cheeses and one is desperately in need of support around the sides. The one in the photo is ripening a bit slower. I'm a little worried these were under salted, so I put some salt into their last cognac wash today. Hopefully that will do the trick. Anyway, they smell so good, not quite like an epoisses because of the cognac (Marc is out of my price range) but very tasty - sweet and a little funky.

Offline Boofer

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Re: Epoisses make 1/3/13
« Reply #6 on: February 03, 2013, 02:25:05 PM »
Oooh, nice! :)

A cheese to you and a hope for ultimate success.

I'm sure a few folks are watching the progress of this cheese with intense interest. I am.

-Boofer-
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Offline mgasparotto

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Re: Epoisses make 1/3/13
« Reply #7 on: February 03, 2013, 03:00:41 PM »
Thanks, Boofer!

I've seen photos of epoisses eaten at various stages of ripening, so I'm thinking I'll cut into one of them in a few days and leave the other to ripen a week or two more. Will definitely follow up with photos and tasting notes. This one has been a lot of fun, and it just smells soooooo good.

Melissa

Offline Al Lewis

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Re: Epoisses make 1/3/13
« Reply #8 on: February 03, 2013, 03:28:02 PM »
Looking great!!  Melissa can you put the PLA directly into the milk during the make?

Offline mgasparotto

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Re: Epoisses make 1/3/13
« Reply #9 on: February 03, 2013, 03:37:54 PM »
Al - I don't see why not. I left it out because it was back ordered and I didn't have it on hand during the make.


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Offline Al Lewis

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Re: Epoisses make 1/3/13
« Reply #10 on: February 04, 2013, 04:34:26 PM »
Thanks Melissa, I plan on making these next and have the PLA on hand now so I wanted to check so I could add it to the recipe. ;D

Offline Tiarella

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Re: Epoisses make 1/3/13
« Reply #11 on: February 04, 2013, 07:17:12 PM »
These look really good!  I want to try this make but I'm feeling gun shy after a couple of extremely funky Chaource makes whose failures remain a mystery to me.  I think I'll stick to hard cheeses just now.  Wonder if it's time to make a new Caerphilly to calm my nerves before I try a soft squishy style again.   ???   But do keep us posted about this batch!  I'm very much looking forward to your tasting notes.   :D

Offline mgasparotto

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Re: Epoisses make 1/3/13
« Reply #12 on: February 09, 2013, 10:10:27 AM »
One of the epoisses started oozing out the sides yesterday so I decided to cut into it for a cheese plate along with some others I had around (gorgonzola on the left and a lactic PLA ripened cows milk on the right). As you can see, the paste isn't uniformly gooey, just the outer edges. It was quite creamy though, and really delicious-the fruit from the cognac really came through at the finish and it was lovely with the dried cherries and candied walnuts. A little pungent, a little lactic, a little salty. A fine cheese, I think! I'm looking forward to tasting the second epoisses in a couple weeks when it's had more time to ripen through to the center.

Offline Tiarella

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Re: Epoisses make 1/3/13
« Reply #13 on: February 09, 2013, 10:27:42 AM »
Looks and sounds great!  I'll have to try one of these sometime.   :D

Offline Al Lewis

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Re: Epoisses make 1/3/13
« Reply #14 on: February 09, 2013, 10:44:39 AM »
Looks great Melissa!!