Author Topic: Hispanico -- tasty hard cheese  (Read 1454 times)

Offline Boofer

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Hispanico -- tasty hard cheese
« on: April 22, 2013, 01:54:03 AM »
Loosely following Jim Wallace's recipe, I made this little wheel of what I hope will be a tasty treat.

I tried making Manchego a couple years ago, but the lipase taste was too much for me. With this make, I've classified the cheese according to the milk source (cow) and it is more properly named "Hispanico". I also tried to limit the amount of lipase in the make. I want a nuance of piquancy. I don't want to be bludgeoned with it.

I had two gallons of milk and I tried to put the curds into my microperf mould (they stack inside each other, so one acts like a somewhat perfect follower) but it bottomed out because I didn't have sufficient curds. I typically use that mould with three gallons and it works fine. So I scrambled to put Plan B into operation. I went and grabbed a 5-inch Reblochon mould, stuck it in the boiling water to sanitize it, lined it with plastic cheesecloth, and put the curds in there. Oh boy, now the curds stick up a half-inch above the lip of the mould. I hoped that the pressing would compress the curds so that they would all fit into the mould and would allow the follower to push down properly. What actually happened was that the curd squeezed out around the follower while being pressed. Eh, I trimmed off the resulting "lip" of curd. All is well.  ;)

Saturday, April 20: Initial milk pH: 6.69

2 gallons Cozy Vale Creamery whole raw milk
4 cubes MA4001 mother culture
1/24 tsp lipase
1/16 tsp dry calf rennet

Used a 2.5x floc factor and it floc'd in 10 minutes.

After preparing the curds and putting them into the mould under warm whey, I pressed down on the follower to try to knit the rind. I did this, flipped & rewrapped the cheese several times. I drained the whey but kept the cheese in the mould inside the kettle with a clean towel covering it to retain warmth. Then I put the cheese onto the press and pressed with 80 pounds (3.5psi) for several hours, flipping and rewrapping as needed.

4:00PM pH 6.25
8:30PM pH 5.91

Sunday, April 21:
4:00AM pH 5.65
12:00PM pH 5.45 <<== I was looking for 5.3-5.4...this will do. Into the whey-brine.
4:00PM flipped and salted the top of the cheese in the brine.
8:00PM out of the brine, dried, weighed...into the minicave to airdry overnight.

-Boofer-
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Offline MrsKK

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Re: Hispanico -- tasty hard cheese
« Reply #1 on: April 23, 2013, 02:03:16 PM »
Looks good.  I look forward to your taste test.  How long is this one supposed to age?

Offline JeffHamm

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Re: Hispanico -- tasty hard cheese
« Reply #2 on: April 23, 2013, 05:13:26 PM »
I too am curious about how this one turns out.  I've a couple of quite aged wheels where I used more lipase than I would now.  They make excellent grating cheeses, but that means they last a long time.  I'm thinking about trying a make with much reduced lipase, but haven't decided on how big of a reduction.  I've used 1/4 tsp in 10 L makes for the grating cheeses, so I was thinking of cutting this down to 1/16th, but I see you've gone even further.

- Jeff
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Offline Boofer

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Re: Hispanico -- tasty hard cheese
« Reply #3 on: April 24, 2013, 08:51:33 AM »
Looks good.  I look forward to your taste test.  How long is this one supposed to age?
Hi Karen.  :)

Following the link's direction, I believe this will be:
"Curado is a semi-firm cheese aged for three to six months with a sweet and nutty flavor. It melts well and is often used in quesadillas."

I find that a lot of the hard cheeses and semi-hard cheeses I've made appeal to me more when they are around the 6 month age. They've developed pretty decent flavor, the texture is sliceable and flexible, and the overall compatibility with my tastebuds is maximized.  8)

I too am curious about how this one turns out.  I've a couple of quite aged wheels where I used more lipase than I would now.  They make excellent grating cheeses, but that means they last a long time.  I'm thinking about trying a make with much reduced lipase, but haven't decided on how big of a reduction.  I've used 1/4 tsp in 10 L makes for the grating cheeses, so I was thinking of cutting this down to 1/16th, but I see you've gone even further.

- Jeff
It has been quite some time since I have attempted a lipase-dosed cheese. The Manchegos I made were over-the-top and generally not very easy to eat as a table cheese. This is contrary to what a commercial Manchego tastes like, which is easy on the tastebuds. That was the main reason for me not attempting such a cheese for so long. I don't have a lot of desire to make a cheese that is hard to eat.  :P

I hope with this make that I have found a compromise with the need for the lipase but limiting its profile so that it is more easily accommodated on the palate.

Does lipase deteriorate/degrade in potency/viability over time? The lipase I used is over four years old.

Yes, I wish I had a Manchego Hispanico mould. Maybe this year....  :-\

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Offline Boofer

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Re: Hispanico -- tasty hard cheese
« Reply #4 on: May 06, 2013, 06:07:50 PM »
At two weeks old, this past Saturday, I decided to cream-coat this little cheese.

Smells good...slight hint of lipase. There is a higher degree of moisture in the wheel than I anticipated which hopefully will allow it to mature and retain good flexibility down the road. Not excessive, just a bit more than expected.

The ambient room temperature has risen dramatically over the past several days. Today, the outside temp is 90F(32C). I don't have AC so the inside temp is around 80F(27C). Looks like I moved this to the cave just in time (~55F/~13C). The coated wheel is resting comfortably on a spruce board. The weight of the cheese, plus the softness of the rind and the plastic netting I normally rest the cheese on in the cave, all combine to make netting markings in the cream coating. They don't go that deep, but they are troublesome. Resting on the spruce board should alleviate that problem. The wood grain is very forgiving and absorbent.

I expect this to age out to 6-8 months. Just in time for the holidays. 8)

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Offline High Altitude

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Re: Hispanico -- tasty hard cheese
« Reply #5 on: May 06, 2013, 07:11:49 PM »
Very pretty!  I made a Saffron-Infused Manchego (beautiful color) that I won't taste for some months still.  I have been so excited about that one as I love store-bought Manchegos....but now I'm starting to worry...too much lipase taste...hmmm.  Well, I'll let you know later on  ;D.

On the lipase note, I made 3 parmesans early this year - one without lipase, one with mild and one with sharp.  Should be a good test of whether I enjoy the lipase taste.  After your remarks, I am now very grateful that I tried this experiment.  All of those 3 will be opened at about the 7 month mark, with halves aged further if necessary (I go through a lot of parm though!).
Have some (homemade) wine with that cheese!

Offline Boofer

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Re: Hispanico -- tasty hard cheese
« Reply #6 on: July 09, 2013, 09:12:43 AM »
I decided yesterday that this cheese may be drying a little too aggressively so I vacuum sealed it. Hopefully that will maintain the moisture level while still permitting it to age gracefully until it's time to be opened. I've done this previously and it worked out well.

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Offline MrsKK

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Re: Hispanico -- tasty hard cheese
« Reply #7 on: July 12, 2013, 10:13:44 AM »
I really like vacuum sealing when cheeses are drying out too quickly.  Makes a great save on something that might be lost...we work too hard at this to let anything go to waste!

Offline Boofer

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Re: Hispanico -- tasty hard cheese
« Reply #8 on: August 15, 2013, 06:46:39 PM »
Just shy of 4 months, I decided to cut this little cheese this morning. I had dried the rind, cream-coated it, and later vacuum-sealed the coated cheese. Today I noticed some mold patches under the vacuum bag and over the cream coating. I opened the bag and wiped the coated cheese all over with vinegar before cutting into it.

The texture was somewhat drier than I had hoped. Perhaps a little too effective at "curing" the rind. The salt level was decent and the lipase accent was light. I wanted light but it could stand to be tweaked up just a bit.

Overall, a cheese that is difficult not to keep nibbling at. ;)

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Offline Denise

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Re: Hispanico -- tasty hard cheese
« Reply #9 on: August 15, 2013, 09:06:00 PM »
That's a lovely-looking cheese. The pretty yellow colour is completely natural? Your make doesn't mention any annatto. Is it the colour of the raw milk?


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Offline JeffHamm

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Re: Hispanico -- tasty hard cheese
« Reply #10 on: August 15, 2013, 10:00:09 PM »
Hi Boofer,

I've been waiting to hear about this one.  A cheese to you for what looks like a wonderful cheese.  Like yourself, I've found 1/4 tsp lipase too much for a table cheese, though I think that's just the right amount for a grating one.  I might have a got at a montasio again, as that has always been a good make procedure for me, but the 3 wheels I have are all for grating (and will probably last me a lifetime given I've only just recently used up 1/4 of one wheel!)  I think I might try my hand with 1/16 tsp in an 11 litre make and see how that goes.  Nice looking outcome.

- Jeff
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Offline Boofer

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Re: Hispanico -- tasty hard cheese
« Reply #11 on: August 16, 2013, 07:49:41 AM »
That's a lovely-looking cheese. The pretty yellow colour is completely natural? Your make doesn't mention any annatto. Is it the colour of the raw milk?
Thank you, Denise. Yes, all natural coloring from the beta-carotene in the raw milk. No annatto.

I think I might try my hand with 1/16 tsp in an 11 litre make and see how that goes.
Thanks for the cheese, Jeff.

Yeah, I'm thinking I could probably get away with 1/16 tsp in this size make. Not a big fan of too much lipase. That's right down there with over-ripened blues and over-ripened washed rinds. :o

This was originally scheduled to be a 6-8 month affinage, but you can see that it had dried quite a bit. I admit to being a fan of hard cheeses and this little cheese gets the job done in that regard. It's very sliceable but I'd like to try grating it and then cooking with it. I imagine that it would work well.

-Boofer-
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Bread, beer, wine, cheese...it's all good.