Author Topic: Herbal Rind Treatments  (Read 570 times)

Offline Alpkäserei

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Herbal Rind Treatments
« on: March 06, 2013, 01:44:07 PM »
I have been toying around with the idea a long time. We plan to have as part of our system certain of our cheeses with a heavy herbal rind treatment. no herb solids mixed with the milk, just some dried herbs used as a surface treatment
there are a few things that i am not sure about, however
I believe the normal practice is to mix dried ground herbs, in the Swiss alps this is generally perpercorns, with salt and then rub this mixture onto the surface of the cheese. the salt in the mix helps to draw out moisture and adhere the herbs to the surface of the cheese.
the two questions i would have with this is
would one rub this mixture onto the surface several times or just once?
how good does this do at preventing wild molds
I know that many herbs have chemical properties that inhibit molds and bacteria, which is why they were used to treat and cure meats.

my specialty is in the alcohol washed rind, this i understand well but i would like to use this herbal treatment on some of our softer cheeses.
Guät git's dr schwiizer Chäser


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Offline linuxboy

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Re: Herbal Rind Treatments
« Reply #1 on: March 06, 2013, 01:48:30 PM »
Alp, what are you going for?

- Presentation
- Flavor/aroma
- rind specie alteration
- other or combo
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Offline Alpkäserei

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Re: Herbal Rind Treatments
« Reply #2 on: March 06, 2013, 02:46:50 PM »
preservation, that is mold inhibi5ion, and flavor due to herbs.
In the Saanaenland region of the Oberland and the Obersimmental near Gstaad and Lenk (popular resort towns) this is a common practice but in the rest of the oberland it is unknown. this is also practiced in the appenzell, some Appenzeller cheese is herb rubbed.
Also, the cheese from the little village of Amsoldingen is treated this way (look up Amsoldinger) and it is one of my favorite cheeses. It fits inot the Mutschli class I believe.
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Offline tnbquilt

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Re: Herbal Rind Treatments
« Reply #3 on: March 06, 2013, 08:07:38 PM »
I have a nice herb garden. I would be interested in applying some herbs to cheese, but I don't know which flavors would go well. I have a bunch of dried herbs every year, but you have to use the right herbs with the right cheese. And of course you have to know how to apply them. Wiping the cheese in oil and then applying the herbs sounds good. Then you have to know how to age it. Do you just leave it natural or vacuum seal it?
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Offline Alpkäserei

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Re: Herbal Rind Treatments
« Reply #4 on: March 06, 2013, 08:33:02 PM »


This is along the lines of what I had in mind. Herbs on the outside, not on the inside. This is just as much for looks as anything else, but does impart some flavor into the surface of the cheese.
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Offline Alpkäserei

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Re: Herbal Rind Treatments
« Reply #5 on: March 07, 2013, 10:48:09 AM »
I have been assembling a list for a long time. Here are some herbs that are common in the Alps. It is from this list that I will base my own concoctions for rind treatments, herb baths, infusions, etc.

First, a list of those herbs that I can confirm to have seen cows eating on the Alp, or otherwise present on the mountainside.

Lovage
Sage
Savory
Tarragon
Thyme
Lavender
Verbena
Rosemary
Mallow
Cowslip
Burnet
Yarrow
Lady's Mantle
Speedwell / Veronica
Plantain

Second, a list of the 13 herbs used in Ricolla  ;D. Several of these overlap the previous group.

Sage
Thyme
Peppermint
Elder (probably the flowers. The leaves are deadly poison)
Horehound
Mallow
Cowslip
Burnet
Yarrow
Marsh Mallow
Lady's Mantle
Speedwell
Plantain

Then some more herbs that are well used in the region, if if they aren't necessarily indigenous.

Basel
Chives
Dill
Marjoram
Oregano
Parsley
Garlic
Orange Mint

That gives us a selection of some 27 different herbs that are local to the Alps, not to mention a few other such as peppercorns and Cayenne that are used extensively in cuisine of the region.
Guät git's dr schwiizer Chäser

Offline linuxboy

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Re: Herbal Rind Treatments
« Reply #6 on: March 07, 2013, 11:06:15 AM »
What I have done is age a cheese out 3-5 weeks first. Enough for a respectable rind, but not too thick of one. Enough to where there's still slime on the surface when you wash, because the slime acts like a glue to hold everything together and keep the herbs attached. So I'll work up a bit of the surface slime with a wash, and then take the wheel and dump it into the dried herbs, and roll the edge, then pat both surfaces down.

No washing afterward. Just age it out until it tastes appropriate for the style. It tends to work best with a more moist cheese.

Great herb list. Could also add chamomile and some of the other edible flowers. We had a thread here deconstructing what the Appenzellers likely use.
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Offline Alpkäserei

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Re: Herbal Rind Treatments
« Reply #7 on: March 07, 2013, 11:32:21 AM »
My aim is to reconstruct the wild flora I encountered in the Berner Oberland, and concoct a mixture that will add some of the overtones to the cheese that they get from they native habitat through the milk.

It is amazing how many of the Alpine herbs are really common weeds here at home -things like mallow, lady's mantle, cowslip, etc. and how many of our special herbs are weeds on the mountains.

If you want a simple mix that has a good alpine aroma, mix together sage and rosemary. If you want a little fuller alpine aroma add some thyme, parsley, and marjoram.

What I have considered to do is to use the normal 10 day schmier cycle, then let it go a week with the normal dry/maintenance cycle before rubbing with an herbal mixture. The herbed cheeses are all going to be softer cheeses. I know well that flavors do not so easily penetrate a harder cheese. Our harder cheese will get its herbs either from an infusion or through the brining process (likely both)

I am also considering doing a cheese with an herb layer in the center. Pack the form with half the curd, sprinkle on a generous layer of herbs, then put on the other half and press together. This would get some herbs inside to flavor the cheese, and also would have a nice look to it.
Guät git's dr schwiizer Chäser

Offline Boofer

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Re: Herbal Rind Treatments
« Reply #8 on: March 08, 2013, 10:35:19 AM »
Member Tammy was trying an Ale-Washed Coriander Trappist Cheese from Mary Karlin's "Artisan Cheese Making At Home". It uses a coriander and orange peel infusion coupled with the same spices added to the pressed cheese.

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