Author Topic: Hello from Cape Town  (Read 886 times)

Offline PaddyS

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Hello from Cape Town
« on: August 20, 2013, 07:10:10 PM »
Hi all,

The cheeese-making bug has bitten!

About two months ago I setup my very own Kindergaten class for making "baby-step" cheeses. My Ricottas were  soon followed by Ricotta Salatas and Mozzerellas. The Ricottas and Mozzerellas were fine but the Ricotta Salata batches were definitely far too salty. Lesson learnt!

Having completed my apprenticeship (or so I belived at the time) about a month ago, I then proceeded with batches of Liecester, Derby and Colby in quick succession . I have about 1kg (2 lbs) of each doing their thing, duly waxed and labelled, in the vegetable drawers at the bottom of the fridge. And now comes the big wait. Not knowing how they will turn out is, for me, part of the mystique of this facinating new hobby.

Trust a beginner to keep things nice and simple, my current batch is a batch of Brie! Somewhere along the road I confused issues a bit and I added Ash to the salt in a 1:10 ratio. The outside does not quite look like the pale white/cream Brie that I am used to, but what the heck, nothing ventured, nothing gained. The four rounds are in their third day of air-drying and were atomised yesterday with P.Candidum mold after being previously salted.  I now waiting in eager expectation for the mold spores to appear.
 
Cheers for now

Paddy
« Last Edit: August 21, 2013, 12:38:28 AM by PaddyS »


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Offline Tiarella

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Re: Hello from Cape Town
« Reply #1 on: August 20, 2013, 07:42:01 PM »
Welcome, Paddy!  Glad to have you here.  You might enjoy this site:  http://www.littlegreencheese.com/
And while it IS so exciting to wait and see how a cheese ages I want to recommend trying Caerphilly cheese because although it is a hard aged cheese it is only aged out a minimum of 3 weeks and then you get to taste how you did.  Nice to have that feedback about your technique without waiting 6 or more months.  AND.....it's a fun and simple cheese that you can put smoked paprika/oil rub on or other things to get some variety.
 You can see photo and video tutorials here:  http://www.littlegreencheese.com/2011/07/caerphilly.html
and three more versions here:  http://cheesemakinghelp.blogspot.com/search/label/Caerphilly

Keep us posted about your cheesey exploits!   :D

Offline PaddyS

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Re: Hello from Cape Town
« Reply #2 on: August 21, 2013, 12:23:51 AM »
Hi Tiarella,

Thanks for the welcome and info.

Prior to my Brie experiment I made up a pint of Flora Danica mother culture of which I use about a third per 2 gallon batch.

As I still have 2/3rds to go, I had planned on my next two batches as being  a Camembert and then a French-Style Coulommier.

I will read up on the Caerphilly and see if I can swop one out.

Many thanks again.

Paddy

Offline Tiarella

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Re: Hello from Cape Town
« Reply #3 on: August 21, 2013, 05:14:22 AM »
Sounds like you're having fun.  I forgot to mention that my mother was born and raised in SA and most of her family still lives there.  In fact, in the 1980's my mother moved back and lived in Cape Town for about 7 years.  I've been to SA but not since I was young.

Offline PaddyS

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Re: Hello from Cape Town
« Reply #4 on: August 21, 2013, 05:47:57 AM »
This Cape Town of ours is a really great place. In fact we think we live in paradise.

This cheese making bug has brought out the deficiencies in our reasoning.

We have a wonderful climate. It never drops below 32 degrees F.  No need for air-conditioners or central heating in the home. Hah hah. We are just coming out of winter and the indoor temperature is 60 degrees F.

On the plus side, who needs a special cheese cave!



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Offline alaninkarachi

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Re: Hello from Cape Town
« Reply #5 on: August 21, 2013, 06:34:55 AM »
Hi,

I'll add my welcome. But I only joined last week!! And I too got very well received.

You sound an advanced cheese maker to my way of thinking.  I've yet to start any cheese.  Will be following your progress.

This does seem to be the forum to be on for sure.

Alan

Offline Boofer

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Re: Hello from Cape Town
« Reply #6 on: August 21, 2013, 09:16:29 AM »
who needs a special cheese cave!
Well, you may. ???  Cheeses need to have a slightly warmer and more humid environment while they ripen. A typical refrigerator is too cold for satisfactory ripening, often hovering under 40F/4C most of the time. A cheese envronment typically hovers between 50-60F/10-15.5C with an RH (relative humidity) ranging between 85%-99%. Your refrigerator could be sucking up any stray humidity inside to keep the food fresh and dry. That's not good for living cheese, unless of course it's vacuum-sealed or waxed. ;)

So, you may want to reconsider a cheese cave....

SEARCH on minicaves, caves, RH, and ripening for more information.

-Boofer-
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Offline PaddyS

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Re: Hello from Cape Town
« Reply #7 on: August 26, 2013, 10:54:16 AM »
The quest for the greatest cheese continues.

The Brie has a really healthy looking growth of PC all over and I have just bagged it.

I could not find a source of cellophane cheese paper so I purchased some food-grade poly-prop bags, punched a good few holes in with a pin to make it breathable and packed the Brie inside. Now the big wait till December - January.

Over the weekend I started a batch of Camembert. So far all is looking great. I salted it this afternoon and it is now drying. I will add the PC mould within the next day or two.


Offline PaddyS

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Re: Hello from Cape Town
« Reply #8 on: August 29, 2013, 07:02:56 AM »
I am more than a bit bucked with my attempts at Brie and Camembert!

I know it is still early days but I have included a photo of the results so far.

As I mentioned in my first post, I mixed a bit of ash with my salt by mistake, but then, as I recall reading somewhere, it seems to retard unwanted moulds  and also assists in the propagation of P.Candidum, so I continued using my mixture on the outside of these cheeses.

I have only sprayed the P.C on the outside and not mixed any with the milk.

So the grey that you see in the photo of the Camembert is the ash with the first signs of mould growth.

The Brie is really looking good (to me anyway) and a really healthy covering of mould has covered most of the outside.


Offline Tiarella

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Re: Hello from Cape Town
« Reply #9 on: August 29, 2013, 09:57:27 AM »
Congratulations!!!  Something no recipe ever told me was to "pat down" PC mold when it grows into a thick carpet and to keep patting it down until it gets moved to the fridge.  I actually don't usually move mine to the fridge at all until they are fully ripe.  Do keep us updated.  Love seeing photos of what other people are making.


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Offline PaddyS

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Re: Hello from Cape Town
« Reply #10 on: August 29, 2013, 01:36:54 PM »
Dear Tiarella

Your comment regarding only moving your cheese to the fridge when ripe, triggers two questions:
 
1. What type of ambient temperatures are they normally ripened at?
2. Does the atmospheric temperature ripening have any effect on the ripening time?


Offline Tiarella

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Re: Hello from Cape Town
« Reply #11 on: August 29, 2013, 04:28:56 PM »
Dear Tiarella

Your comment regarding only moving your cheese to the fridge when ripe, triggers two questions:
 
1. What type of ambient temperatures are they normally ripened at?
2. Does the atmospheric temperature ripening have any effect on the ripening time?


Oh, gosh!  Sorry but I don't remember.  Look at the threads on the Bloomy Cheese board and see if there's info there or look online.
Here are 3 versions of Brie by different people:  http://cheesemakinghelp.blogspot.com/search/label/Brie
You can also search their recipes on www.cheesemaking.com  (I think there's a recipe link there on the left)
Or, see if Gavin at www.littlegreencheese.com has a Brie tutorial.

Check those out and see what makes sense to you and go for it!  And then let us know of course.   :D

Offline PaddyS

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Re: Hello from Cape Town
« Reply #12 on: October 11, 2013, 07:23:36 AM »
Hi again,

My Colby did not quite work. Centres are moist but texture is crumbly.

The Brei and Camembert! Well that's another story. The Camembert was great and lasted no time at all what with kids and grand-kids all tucking into it.

I have just cut into the first Brei at 45 days and the centre is oozing but not quit runny. It tastes great.

Cheers for now, I need to taste a bit more.

Offline Boofer

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Re: Hello from Cape Town
« Reply #13 on: October 11, 2013, 09:44:58 AM »
Beautiful Brie, Paddy! Let me give you your first cheese for such a sterling effort.

Sorry about the Colby. The next one will no doubt be much improved. ;)

-Boofer-
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Offline Tiarella

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Re: Hello from Cape Town
« Reply #14 on: October 11, 2013, 09:46:16 AM »
That looks great!  And I've been told by the experts that too runny is frowned upon.  Looks to me like you hit it perfectly.....
Congratulations!!!