Author Topic: My Cams STINK....  (Read 1036 times)

Offline Shalloy

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My Cams STINK....
« on: February 26, 2013, 01:59:12 PM »
My cams have been ageing for a few weeks now but everytime I open the cheese cave lid they absolutely wreek. Its not an ammonia smell more like just a pungent mouldy sort of smell. hard to describe really. Its nothing Ive ever smelt from commercial brought cams before.

Is this normal?


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Offline NimbinValley

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Re: My Cams STINK....
« Reply #1 on: February 26, 2013, 02:59:35 PM »
Hi Shalloy. 

Its difficult to know what you mean by stink - one person's stink is another's pleasant aroma - but, they shouldn't smell putrid, rotten or faecal.  You need to distinguish between strong smells that you may find unpleasant and smells of contamination.  Trust your sense of smell to warn you about whether it is fit to eat.

Comparing to supermarket cheese smells is not a good yardstick since many of those cheeses have been made to give them an extended shelf life with the consequence of having reduced flavour and aroma.

You should be finding mushroomy, mouldy, fungus type smells.  If you used some B.linens in the mix you may be getting rich bacterial smells (dirty socks?). 

They shouldn't have any strange looking moulds growing either.  They should be ranging from uniform white to a mix of white/gold/orange.

Take one out, leave it for half an hour and then smell and maybe taste it.  Trust your normal innate senses - and remember that even if the cheese is ok from a pathology perspective, if you don't like it, then you don't like it and its not a good cheese!

They are my thoughts.

NV.  8)


Offline Shalloy

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Re: My Cams STINK....
« Reply #2 on: February 26, 2013, 04:03:38 PM »
The only mould I have growing on the cams is the PC and a tiny bit of light blue on the surface which first appeared. I am ageing these with blues (but in seperate containers). The PC has completely covered the sides with a nice thick layer but hasn't completely covered the top and bottom yet. Its getting there but seems to be much slower than the growth on the sides. you can still see the blue mould under the PC but it too hasnt grown anymore so Im hopeing thats because the PC has taken over.

The smell is hard to describe. Maybe a bit like smelly feet, but not exactly. Its like nothing Ive ever smelt before. It seems stronger in the actual cave than it is when I open the maturation box and smell inside or the cams itself. But the smell lingers on your pallette for long after the cave has been closed up. I can still smell it now in my mind if that makes sense.

Not mushroomy, perhaps more so fungal or mouldy

Are there any visual clues that will tell me if its been contaminated?

Is it ok for me to cut a small slice of the edge from one of these to taste test it?  Will the PC grow around where Ive cut it?

Offline Shalloy

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Re: My Cams STINK....
« Reply #3 on: February 26, 2013, 08:22:53 PM »
I went home for lunch and had a good smell of these cams up close. There is a distinctive ammonia smell up close but I think it just changes once its been sitting in the cave and then eventually I open the cave and get a waft of it.

Here is what they look like at the moment. They are now 19 days old so should I wrap them and place them in my normal fridge at 3C or wait until th entire surface is covered with PC?

« Last Edit: February 26, 2013, 10:31:03 PM by Shalloy »

Offline Schnecken Slayer

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Re: My Cams STINK....
« Reply #4 on: February 26, 2013, 11:30:40 PM »
You really want the PC to cover the cheese as it is what gives them their creamy texture.
BBracken recommends leaving them in the cave, unwrapped, until ripe and then moving to the fridge.
I had some that I thought were ready and wrapped and moved to the fridge but they took another three weeks to get soft all the way through.
You could move some to the fridge and compare the results to see what happens although I side towards leaving them in the cave.
-Bill
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Offline Tiarella

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Re: My Cams STINK....
« Reply #5 on: February 27, 2013, 06:51:32 AM »
I a little surprised the PC hasn't covered these and I share your concern about the other molds.  I don't worry about health issues from them, just that the cheese may not taste as you'd like it to.  keep us posted about how this turns out. :-\

Offline bbracken677

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Re: My Cams STINK....
« Reply #6 on: February 27, 2013, 07:11:11 AM »
If you have the proper conditions for the cams to ripen in your cave, why would you wrap and move to your fridge? 

The only cams I have reduced the temps on prematurely and wrapped one of them to provide a contrast actually yielded no contrast, but rather due to the reduced temps failed to ripen properly.  My other makes I left in the container at a temp of 50-52F and turned out pretty good with the occasional underdeveloped core, but still tasted good. I think the ones that had the underdeveloped core were just a tad thicker than the others.

Offline Shalloy

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Re: My Cams STINK....
« Reply #7 on: February 27, 2013, 01:56:43 PM »
If you have the proper conditions for the cams to ripen in your cave, why would you wrap and move to your fridge? 

The only cams I have reduced the temps on prematurely and wrapped one of them to provide a contrast actually yielded no contrast, but rather due to the reduced temps failed to ripen properly.  My other makes I left in the container at a temp of 50-52F and turned out pretty good with the occasional underdeveloped core, but still tasted good. I think the ones that had the underdeveloped core were just a tad thicker than the others.

Ok so I should leave them in the cave at 10C? What about the smells, nothing to worry about? How long do they generally take to ripen as these are now 3 weeks maturing and sort of feel soft to squeeze?

Thanks again.

Offline bbracken677

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Re: My Cams STINK....
« Reply #8 on: February 28, 2013, 08:10:35 AM »
You should give one a try after they reach 4 weeks and see how they are.  Let one sit at room temp for 30 minutes or so and then cut into it and see how the paste has developed. Of course you will want to give it a taste : )  I like the paste on crackers, but some people like the rind as well. I cannot quite bring myself the try the rind....

If the cheese is mostly chalky in the center, then perhaps give another week on the remaining ones...I dont think you can get more aging from a cut cam...I tried once and it didnt work very well at all lol

Offline Shalloy

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Re: My Cams STINK....
« Reply #9 on: February 28, 2013, 02:05:55 PM »
ok cheers, Will give that a try.


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Offline Shalloy

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Re: My Cams STINK....
« Reply #10 on: March 06, 2013, 05:05:55 PM »
I tried this cam and it was suprisingly good. Nice and soft in the middle like a cam should be I will leave the rest at 10c to age a bit more yet though.

Offline Shalloy

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Re: My Cams STINK....
« Reply #11 on: March 25, 2013, 10:59:12 PM »
Ok so these cams have been in the maturation fridge at 10C for 5-6 weeks now. What should I do with them? Keep them in there or wrap them and move them to the normal fridge to make way for some new cheese?

Offline Schnecken Slayer

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Re: My Cams STINK....
« Reply #12 on: March 26, 2013, 12:27:00 AM »
You should move them to a cooler area once they are ripe otherwise they will over-ripen.
Some people wrap, some just leave them in the container. I wrapped mine and had no issues.
-Bill
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Offline Shalloy

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Re: My Cams STINK....
« Reply #13 on: March 26, 2013, 06:18:14 AM »
Ok will do thanks for that.

Offline simoncnx

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Re: My Cams STINK....
« Reply #14 on: May 02, 2013, 06:26:34 AM »
used to happen to me and gave a very bitter aftertaste  quite unpleasant.  I discovered it was because the moisture content was too high  and now the first few days i leave them uncovered in the fridge  and weigh the same cheese daily to see how much weight it has lost before covering.

hope it helps