Author Topic: Cheddar with soap flavor  (Read 655 times)

Offline tnbquilt

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Cheddar with soap flavor
« on: June 22, 2013, 09:51:07 AM »
I have a cheddar that I made the end December. That makes it 6 months old. When I first bit into it, I'm thinking it's good. Then another flavor starts to show. My husband says it tastes like soap. I think musty, or earthy. There is a very small piece left, but I am still wanting to understand the flavor. I looked it up Gianaclis Caldwell's book and it says that soap flavor is rancidity and says that high levels of free fatty acids from anything causes a lipolysis. I don't know what that means. The solution says Limit the following: damaged milk fat flobules, raw milk with it's intact lipase, psychrotophic bacteria that can produce lipases, elevated temperatures during aging, molds in the milk.

The part I got out of that is to limit raw milk with it's intact lipase. I did use raw milk, and to date my best cheddar ever was pasteurized. The other one I understand is elevated temperatures during aging. My cave did get unplugged for 24 hours once, but I tasted the cheddar that I made the day after I made this one, and it does not have a soap flavor, and I used the same milk. I was experimenting on recipes so I made one on Saturday and one on Sunday. The one on Saturday had the soap taste, but the one on Sunday is just bad. It doesn't have soap taste though! It has high acidity. Dry, crumbly, tangy, hard.

I have pretty good notes on this cheese but can't pick out what might have caused it.

Any ideas for soapy or earthy flavor in cheddar?
Tammy


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Offline WovenMeadows

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Re: Cheddar with soap flavor
« Reply #1 on: June 22, 2013, 01:35:18 PM »
I wonder if its less a soapy flavor to your husband, and more of a soapy, filmy mouthfeel, i.e. texture? A couple of my early cheeses in retrospect I might describe as that.

Offline tnbquilt

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Re: Cheddar with soap flavor
« Reply #2 on: June 22, 2013, 01:40:27 PM »
I found this doing web searches.

"The rancid flavor is soapy and disagreeable. It is caused by the activity of the enzyme lipase that yields butyric acid. It is more likely that you will find this defect in aged cheese"

That goes back to what my book says but I still don't understand what to do for it. Pasteurized the milk that I make cheddar out of?

I don't think it's a mouth feel, it is a flavor that comes in on the back end of the cheese. I've been wondering how to describe it, and he said soap. I'm going to get other people to taste the little piece that's left and see how they describe it. I know people with very specific taste buds but I haven't gotten it to them yet.

I can't accept that a 6 month old cheddar is over aged, but I did use raw milk. Maybe I should have pasteurized it.
Tammy

Offline WovenMeadows

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Re: Cheddar with soap flavor
« Reply #3 on: June 26, 2013, 06:58:13 AM »
I don't think you need to pasteurize to solve the problem. Nor is it that the cheese was overaged or spoiled. From Caldwell's _Mastering Artisan Cheesemaking_:
Rancidity stems from breakdown of the milk fats through lipolysis - the work of lipases - and this can happen at many points in the milking, storage, and cheesemaking process. For instance, excessive agitation of the milk during milking and transport can break up the fat globules, more easily going rancid down the road. Psychotropic - cold-loving - bacteria can also produce lipases, this could happen in milk that was too old, or improperly stored (i.e. not cold enough during storage). While lipolysis can be a good thing later on, leading to piquant flavors in Provolone, Manchego, etc., happening too soon (e.g. in the milk) leads to rancid flavors. Caldwell also says that too-warm of an aging can contribute (where, presumably, lipolysis would again occur too quickly and early).

Offline tnbquilt

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Re: Cheddar with soap flavor
« Reply #4 on: June 26, 2013, 05:16:11 PM »
Thanks. I was trying to figure out how to control it, but the only thing that I see in there that I can control is after I buy the milk I don't get it too cold or too warm. Someone did unplug my cheese cave for 24 hours once, but the other cheeses do not seem to have suffered. I tasted another cheddar that was made the day after this one, from the same milk, and it does not have the odd flavor.

I'm going to hope it was a fluke and doesn't happen again.
Tammy


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