For those of you who understand cheese chemistry better than I...
Two to three times per week, I make an Alpine (Gruyere style) cheese in batches of about 100 pounds, forming them into 12 pound wheels. For the past several months, my cows were primarily on hay and a little feed, and the make procedure was routine. However, they moved to fresh grass a few weeks ago and I observed two very interesting changes in the make.
1. After I press under the whey and go to hoop, the curds are MUCH drier than normal and have a little trouble staying together
2. The terminal pH is MUCH higher (around 5.50) compared to what had been very consistent (around 5.0-5.1).
Nothing has changed other than the diet switch to spring grass. Could that have anything to do with these changes?
The final cheese looks/feels just fine after pressing/brining, but I'll keep an eye on how it develops and turns out.