Author Topic: Emmentaler Rezept, auf Wunsch!  (Read 2121 times)

Offline Alpkäserei

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Emmentaler Rezept, auf Wunsch!
« on: February 28, 2013, 08:39:23 PM »
Here is my take on an Emmentaler recipe as requested by a few members here on the forums.

A few notes first,

First, there is no 'H' in the spelling of the name of the Emmental region, or its associated cheese, Emmentaler

This is based on my knowledge of Alpine cheeses in the canton of Bern, Switzerland which I learned in person from a very fine cheese maker, and also supplemented with some other research into the incredible diversity of this small region.

However, I did not learn to make Emmentaler cheese, and I do not produce this cheese. For me it is not worth it. I cannot make a better product than Swiss Emmentaler which is readily available in the US at a lower price than I can afford to charge. So I must base my approach on similar cheeses that I know.

There are a few things to note on this wise,
We make our cheeses in such a way as to suppress the growth of Proprianic Shermannii. We do not desire this bacteria and its associated flavor. emmentaler relies on this bacteria, and is produced and aged in such a ways as to encourage its growth.

But we can adjust to make this cheese if we understand this fact.

So in addition to my knowledge of Alpine style, I add information to it about the specifics of PS growth, and also I take information from technical documents outlining the laws governing how Swiss Emmentaler is to be produced.

So at long last, here is my recipe:

Ingredients:
6 gallons top quality milk. A Cheese like Emmentaler requires good milk.
1/8 tsp. TA 61 culture
1/8 tsp. LH culture
1/8 tsp. P. Shermannii.
3/16 tsp powdered calf rennet OR
1 1/2 tsp liquid calf rennet
Salz

Note one thing,
I don't use starter cultures, I use my own cultures passed on through whey and if I do start from a powder, I never use it directly but first make a yogurt type culture. So these amounts may be off. If you think to use different amounts, feel free to do so. However, with careful cheesemaking practices exact amounts of culture are not overly important. There is an acceptable range.

Directions:

Culture milk at 91 degrees. With a powdered starter, it may be advisable to let it set for 20 to 30 minutes to incubate.
Add rennet at 91 degrees. Stir very thoroughly. It is important to mix rennet in properly.
If using powdered rennet, first dissolve into warm water with a pinch of salt, then add slowly to milk. It is a good practice to use a syringe to add rennet.
Allow to coagulate for 30 minutes.

[I am going to skip out on my descriptions of rennet amounts and procedures here, assuming you already know my practices, or have a good feel for your own methods. All I will say here is make sure your rennet is measured out with the proper amount according to its strength to set the milk in 30 minutes]

With a large knife, cut a series of parallel lines about 1 inch apart, then cut another set of lines 1" apart at a right angle to the first set.
With a large spoon, or a saucer or other suitable tool, turn over the top of the curd and then stir slowly for 10 minutes, cutting the large chunks as you go. Aim to have 1" chunks by the end of 10 minutes.
With a whisk, stir slowly for 10 minutes first in a circular pattern, then in an 8 pattern. Aim to have curds 1/4 inch by the end of 10 minutes and as uniform as possible.

Stir very slowly with a large spoon or spatula for about 20 minutes, do not allow the curd to clump, but do not stir so fast as to further break the curd

Heat slowly over a period of 30 to 40 minutes to a temperature of 124 degrees. Stir slowly and constantly.

Immediately remove curd into the form. The form should be sized such that the final cheese will be about 4 or 5 inches in height. I recommend a solid mold with no bottom, but use whatever you have available.
Knead curd into form, pressing out excess whey with your hands.

Press warm, for a cheese this small this may mean under warm whey. For a larger cheese, we would wrap it in a towel or some thermal material.

Press for 5 minutes then turn,
Press for 10 minutes and turn
Press for 20 minutes and turn

After this point it should be knit and can be removed from heat/uncovered. We do not want to keep it warm too long, or our PS will not thrive.

press for 40 minutes and turn
Press for 1 hour and turn
Press for 2 hour and turn
Press for 4 hours and turn
Press overnight

In the morning, remove to salt brine. Brine should be about 50 to 55 degrees.
Brine for 6 to 8 hours This cheese does not need to be very salty, unlike my Alpkäse which is a salty cheese.

Store cheese in a cool room for 7 to 10 days, washing daily to establish a rind (you can find my washing procedures elsewhere)
Cool room should be 50 to 60 degrees, 70 to 90% RH

Store cheese in a warmer room 65 to 75 degrees, 70 to 90% RH for 3 to 4 weeks. Turn weekly and wipe down as needed. The cheese will sweat out fat, so do not be alarmed. Also, depending on conditions and rind strength you may need to watch for volunteer molds.

Remove back to cool storage and let age for at least 120 days (this is the standard required for Swiss Emmentaler) and up to 18 months.
« Last Edit: March 01, 2013, 12:58:22 PM by Alpkäserei »
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Offline H-K-J

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Re: Emmentaler Rezept, auf Wunsch!
« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2013, 12:00:45 PM »
Alp,
I will be using this (already stole it Uhmm, copied it to word).
about time to start a new one, I will change the amount of the cultures, but I think this will work excelent ^-^
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Offline Al Lewis

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Re: Emmentaler Rezept, auf Wunsch!
« Reply #2 on: March 04, 2013, 01:04:04 PM »
Let me know how much of the cultures you use .  I plan on doing this, when I get better, but also would like to change the amount.

Offline Sailor Con Queso

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Re: Emmentaler Rezept, auf Wunsch!
« Reply #3 on: March 04, 2013, 02:06:12 PM »
In the production of Swiss-type cheese two successive fermentations occur. First, lactic acid bacteria (LAB), particularly convert lactose to lactate. Then, during ripening, propionic acid bacteria (PAB) convert lactate to propionic acid, acetic acid and carbon dioxide. CO2 is responsible for eye formation and propionic acid produces the typical nutty/sweet flavor of Swiss-type cheese.

There are different subspecies of Propionic available that have different temperature and environmental requirements. Typically though Propionic needs at least 62F to do its thing. The sweet spot for optimal growth is usually between 77F and 95F. Homemade Swiss can easily fail to produce eyes or much propionic flavor because of a warm room ripening that is too cool.
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Offline H-K-J

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Re: Emmentaler Rezept, auf Wunsch!
« Reply #4 on: March 04, 2013, 04:16:51 PM »
The sweet spot for optimal growth is usually between 77F and 95F. Homemade Swiss can easily fail to produce eyes or much propionic flavor because of a warm room ripening that is too cool.
If this being the case, this is more than likely where I failed.
My warm room was bouncing back and forth between 66 and 74 deg.F, between that and the old newbie don't screw-up syndrome and OH MY GAWD wusapennin now, I just created a new fail :-[
On the bright side, Man that cheese tastes GOOOOOOoooouuud ;D 
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Offline Alpkäserei

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Re: Emmentaler Rezept, auf Wunsch!
« Reply #5 on: March 04, 2013, 06:05:33 PM »
Perhpas this is true, but these temperatures are what is required by Swiss law for the production of Swiss Emmentaler AOC
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Offline H-K-J

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Re: Emmentaler Rezept, auf Wunsch!
« Reply #6 on: March 04, 2013, 06:27:55 PM »
Alp,
are we still using a weight of 8 lbs. pressure to 1 lb. of cheese?
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Offline Sailor Con Queso

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Re: Emmentaler Rezept, auf Wunsch!
« Reply #7 on: March 05, 2013, 08:00:34 AM »
Alp - In a laboratory environment, the optimal temperature for Propionic is 77-95F. However, I did not mean to suggest that is the temperature you should use for the warm room/eye formation phase. IMHO it should be 70-72F or "normal" room temperature (about what you suggested). The low 60s can be really problematic and may not produce good results. At the lower temperatures the CO2 production is much slower and will tend to produce smaller and fewer eyes.
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Offline BobE102330

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Re: Emmentaler Rezept, auf Wunsch!
« Reply #8 on: March 05, 2013, 10:00:12 AM »
Thanks for the PS discussion.  My first Jarlsberg attempt will now move from the 63 degree back bedroom to the warmer kitchen.

Offline Sailor Con Queso

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Re: Emmentaler Rezept, auf Wunsch!
« Reply #9 on: March 05, 2013, 12:02:54 PM »
Bob - That's exactly what I mean. 63F is barely within the growth range for Propionic. You will get much better results at a little higher temperature. In this case, a few degrees makes a lot of difference.
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Offline Alpkäserei

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Re: Emmentaler Rezept, auf Wunsch!
« Reply #10 on: March 05, 2013, 01:02:54 PM »
My Apologies sailor, I misunderstood the nature of your comments.

I'd be interested to see some records of room temperatures that some of these failed emmentalers were aged at. It has caused me some amount of worry trying to understand why these did not work properly, I don't like it when I advise someone on something and it doesn't work right!

I have narrowed these down to 3 likely reasons for PS failure:

Excessive amounts of salt. As discussed elsewhere, this will inhibit PS growth. Part of the reason why non PS Alpine types are heavily salted.
Excessive culture and acidification. Too much acid is not good for PS either.
Too low temperature during PS growth stage.

It seems to me more and ore like the last one is at fault, which is good for me because the other two would be recipe problems.

PS does not grow optimally at 63 to 65, but it will grow. But, this is not in the growth range for a heavily PS's cheese like Emmentaler. It is perfectly suitable for a modern Gruyere type cheese where slight PS is good but heavy PS is bad. (as I have discussed elsewhere, the old Gruyere avoided PS). We have had cheese grow PS in them when our aging room got in the lower to mid 60s. For us, this is very bad.
Guät git's dr schwiizer Chäser

Offline Al Lewis

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Re: Emmentaler Rezept, auf Wunsch!
« Reply #11 on: March 05, 2013, 01:23:15 PM »
The strange part in my case was that I made an Emmentaler and a Jarlsberg using the same cultures and the same aging room/cave and the Jarlsberg tasted great but the Emmentaler had absolutely no taste of proprionic acid at all.

Offline Sailor Con Queso

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Re: Emmentaler Rezept, auf Wunsch!
« Reply #12 on: March 05, 2013, 04:42:09 PM »
Propionic is very salt sensitive. The difference could be in the brining - concentration and/or timing.
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Offline Al Lewis

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Re: Emmentaler Rezept, auf Wunsch!
« Reply #13 on: March 05, 2013, 07:02:06 PM »
I'd have to go back and check but I don't think there was much difference in the recipes.  The Emmentaler may have brined longer.

Offline H-K-J

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Re: Emmentaler Rezept, auf Wunsch!
« Reply #14 on: March 06, 2013, 09:30:29 AM »
I think I left my Emmentaler in the brine for 10 maybe 11 hours,
I was using a 20% brine solution not the saturated brine
A thought I had, that I pressed in hot whey to long and to heavy at the start, that and the 120# overnight press was maybe to much.
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