Author Topic: Stirring the curd: cams  (Read 770 times)

Offline Shalloy

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Stirring the curd: cams
« on: August 25, 2013, 07:57:06 AM »
Hope I have posted this in the correct forum.

I had a second attempt at making camemberts today and my instructions in my recipe say this after cutting the curds and leaving them for 30 mins

Stirring the curds
Turn all the curds over gently for 3 minutes. Any larger curds that come to the surface can be cut at this stage. Do this at least 3 times.

But it didnt say how long to leave them between each time I do this.  I misunderstood this so only did it once, waited for the curds to settle then started scooping off the whey with a glass and filled my hoops with the curd.

Did I stuff up as I've later found some information on the net that says I should have stirred my curds every ten minutes for an hour? I probably had them sitting for about 10 minutes after stirring them once then started scooping them into the hoops.

I hope I haven't stuffed them by not waiting the full hour.  I wish instructions given were more precise. I've read so many different recipes with so many different ways to do things.


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Offline linuxboy

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Re: Stirring the curd: cams
« Reply #1 on: August 25, 2013, 08:37:33 AM »
The point of stirring is to encourage the curds to release whey. And also if your cut is not precise, to turn over the curds and make sure they are all the same size. You don't need to wait between stirs. You just stir. At a rate that's as fast as possible without shattering curds. And then the point when you stop is up to you, based on the moisture you want in the final cheese. More stirring means less moisture because the curds dry out more before fusing.

Recipes are different because there's more than one type of cam, and they're made with more than one type of milk.
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Offline Shalloy

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Re: Stirring the curd: cams
« Reply #2 on: August 25, 2013, 06:34:06 PM »
I found that even though I had cut my curds up to a fairly uniform size they still started to break up and crumble as I stirred them. Is that normal?

Here's a picture of what they look like the next morning with the moulds removed. I'm supposed to salt them and leave at room temp for 24 hours.

Are they too moist? Is it okay to salt them now or should I leave them covered for 24 hours then salt them?

Thanks again


Offline tnbquilt

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Re: Stirring the curd: cams
« Reply #3 on: August 25, 2013, 07:59:37 PM »
Don't panic about how often you stir. You can figure this out as you go. Stirring creates more acid, which is what makes it into cheese, but you don't want too much acid. It's more of I did this this time and this is how it came out, so next time I might want to do that.

There is no way that a book can know what kind of milk you are using, or the temperature in the house, and so many other variables. It's not that precise.

Keep records of everything. Time, temperature, how much you stirred, if you are worried about it.

When you taste it, you can read your notes and then decide if you want to do something different.

Right now, you have cheese! And now you must age it.
Tammy

Offline Shalloy

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Re: Stirring the curd: cams
« Reply #4 on: August 25, 2013, 08:05:34 PM »
Thanks tnbquilt. So they look okay to you from the picture?

I'm about to head into the city for the night with the wife to see Pink in concert so had to salt them and cover them with paper towel to leave on the kitchen bench for 24 hours.


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Offline Shalloy

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Re: Stirring the curd: cams
« Reply #5 on: August 25, 2013, 08:26:32 PM »
Here they are after salting them.


Offline linuxboy

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Re: Stirring the curd: cams
« Reply #6 on: August 25, 2013, 10:19:08 PM »
Quote
Stirring creates more acid
Stirring increases collisions, which increases syneresis. Acid is a function of bacterial quantity, the phase of growth, food/competition, and pH.

Don't sweat it. Might not be fantastic the first time. Try again and incorporate what you've learned. Have fun at the concert. Pink's come out with some awesome songs after she got back together with Carey and after her daughter was born :)
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Offline Shalloy

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Re: Stirring the curd: cams
« Reply #7 on: August 26, 2013, 12:50:53 AM »
This is my second lot and I stuffed the first lot so really wanted this to turn out okay.

What will the end result be of not stirring them enough? How will it effect the cheese?

Offline linuxboy

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Re: Stirring the curd: cams
« Reply #8 on: August 26, 2013, 09:08:13 PM »
Stirring is about moisture content. Duration of waiting before draining is about calcium levels, which affect how solid a bloomy rind is (less acid at drain, more solid paste). So if you don't stir, tends to result in more moisture. Acid is a separate situation, depends on culture selection and rennetting pH.
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Offline Shalloy

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Re: Stirring the curd: cams
« Reply #9 on: August 26, 2013, 10:43:51 PM »
Okay so as these are quite moist am I better off putting them in the maturation box with the lid off completely and fridge set at 12C until they start to dry out a bit? Or just put the lid on and crack one corner open perhaps?


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Offline Shalloy

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Re: Stirring the curd: cams
« Reply #10 on: August 29, 2013, 06:12:58 PM »
I have these cams sitting inside a maturation box at 12 C and 91% humidity.  Ive seen ideal temps mentioned being 8C at 80-85% and 11-15C at 95% so once again a few variables.

Any thoughts from experienced cam makers on what is the ideal temp and humidty for these?

Offline Homecheesejack

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Re: Stirring the curd: cams
« Reply #11 on: September 22, 2013, 02:53:25 PM »
Hi Shalloy,
Interesting question, only because there is so much mystery around cutting, healing and stirring curds. Whilst there are better people to help with the specific cam issues, I can recommend reading this article I wrote: http://www.homemadecheese.org/healing-scalding-and-washing-curds.html just to clarify some of the reasons we do what we do with curds.
Best for the cheese,
Jack