Author Topic: Gruyère attempt with questions  (Read 1099 times)

Offline Mike Richards

  • Mature Cheese
  • ****
  • Location: colorado springs, co
  • Posts: 445
  • Cheeses: 19
Re: Gruyère attempt with questions
« Reply #15 on: September 22, 2013, 10:59:55 AM »
Alp--I planted some apple trees when first got to this house (2 years ago).  Our harvest so far has been 10 apples...better than the 2 cherries I got.  I'll have to wait until I stay somewhere for more than  2-3 years before I can get good return on my fruit growing efforts--that or buy a place that already has established fruit trees.

I'd be interested in seeing your "entirely homemade wash" post as well as hearing about how the apple cider wash turns out.
If only I could make cheese as well as I grow a mustache...


Guests, join the CheeseForum.org community to remove this ad.


Online Alpkäserei

  • Mature Cheese
  • ****
  • Location: Indiana/Kanton Bern
  • Posts: 475
  • Cheeses: 50
  • Default personal text
Re: Gruyère attempt with questions
« Reply #16 on: September 22, 2013, 01:06:16 PM »
I'll work that up some time, maybe later this afternoon, maybe 2 months from now  :o
Gut gibt's der schwiizer Chäser

Offline Mike Richards

  • Mature Cheese
  • ****
  • Location: colorado springs, co
  • Posts: 445
  • Cheeses: 19
Re: Gruyère attempt with questions
« Reply #17 on: September 22, 2013, 09:37:23 PM »
When you get to it, I'll enjoy it.

I'm on day 9 of washing.  Even though the meter reads 85-93% RH, the cheese hasn't been staying wet. I moved it to a more closed off environment within the cheese and it is finally getting a little slimy today.  Unless it's a bad idea, I think I will continue washing it daily until it's more slimy.
If only I could make cheese as well as I grow a mustache...

Offline Spellogue

  • Michael
  • Mature Cheese
  • ****
  • Location: Ohio
  • Posts: 301
  • Cheeses: 14
  • Default personal text
Re: Gruyère attempt with questions
« Reply #18 on: September 22, 2013, 09:47:56 PM »
I was raised Catholic.  We drink vehemently.
I still drink quite happily, but I'm a recovering Catholic. 

BTW do the Swiss ever use beer in the wash?
I can resist anything but temptation.      ~ Oscar Wilde

Offline High Altitude

  • Mature Cheese
  • ****
  • Location: Colorado
  • Posts: 234
  • Cheeses: 18
  • Cheesemaking & Winemaking
Re: Gruyère attempt with questions
« Reply #19 on: September 23, 2013, 10:52:54 AM »
I've been beer washing a Coriander-Orange Peel Trappist for a few weeks now.  It never got slimy though, just tacky.  Anyway, I've reduced to 2-3 washings a week just to keep the bad spotty molds at bay.  I have no idea if I'm doing anything right with this one though :-(.  One thing I have discovered is that even the worst makes (almost always) still turn out to be edible cheese  ;D.
Have some (homemade) wine with that cheese!


Guests, join the CheeseForum.org community to remove this ad.


Online Alpkäserei

  • Mature Cheese
  • ****
  • Location: Indiana/Kanton Bern
  • Posts: 475
  • Cheeses: 50
  • Default personal text
Re: Gruyère attempt with questions
« Reply #20 on: September 23, 2013, 11:22:13 AM »
Homemade post is up somewhere else, in the ingredients section.

Also, I don't know of any beer-washed Swiss cheeses off hand. Beer isn't that important in Switzerland, wine is the alcohol of choice for the most part. But since there are over 450 different styles of cheese in this small country, I am sure one of them at least uses beer...

Gut gibt's der schwiizer Chäser

Offline Mike Richards

  • Mature Cheese
  • ****
  • Location: colorado springs, co
  • Posts: 445
  • Cheeses: 19
Re: Gruyère attempt with questions
« Reply #21 on: September 29, 2013, 10:42:21 PM »
I've been washing this for quite a while now, but haven't seen any b linens growth (at least, I haven't seen any color change like I expected).  I'm not sure if I'm doing something wrong or if I just don't have any naturals floating around in my house.  In any case, I think I'll stop washing here soon.  I'm a little uncertain how to do that, though.  Even though I wash the wood with each washing, the cheese still sticks, and I'm concerned that once I stop washing it will stick even more.  I'm thinking of putting a cheese mat between the cheese and the board while I let it dry it out.

wet washed cheese
If only I could make cheese as well as I grow a mustache...

Offline JeffHamm

  • Old Cheese
  • *****
  • Location: Auckland, New Zealand
  • Posts: 2,400
  • Cheeses: 129
  • As goes the cheesemaker, so goes the cheese
Re: Gruyère attempt with questions
« Reply #22 on: September 30, 2013, 12:37:22 AM »
Looks good.  You'll have wild b.linens around, they are on your hands.  It will colour up in a couple weeks.  I've often found that the colour comes in after I've stopped washing.  Nice job.

- Jeff
The wise do not always start out on the right path, but they do know when to change course.

Offline Boofer

  • Old Cheese
  • *****
  • Location: Parkland, Washington
  • Posts: 4,030
  • Cheeses: 177
  • Contemplating cheese
Re: Gruyère attempt with questions
« Reply #23 on: September 30, 2013, 08:33:23 AM »
Sweet-looking cheese, Mike!

I've done the mat on the board deal...works great.

-Boofer-
Let's ferment something!
Bread, beer, wine, cheese...it's all good.

Offline High Altitude

  • Mature Cheese
  • ****
  • Location: Colorado
  • Posts: 234
  • Cheeses: 18
  • Cheesemaking & Winemaking
Re: Gruyère attempt with questions
« Reply #24 on: October 01, 2013, 10:35:06 AM »
That looks amazing, Mike.  I also cannot get b.linens to grow here.  I even washed mine for an extra week with the slimy stuff, and all I get is freckles of other colors and an odd neon yellow spot (on my most recent port salut).  I just keep washing (a couple times a week) with the salt-water brine and hope one day that I'll get some red/orange.  I'm going to order another type next time, and hope for some "desired" colors.
Have some (homemade) wine with that cheese!


Guests, join the CheeseForum.org community to remove this ad.


Online Alpkäserei

  • Mature Cheese
  • ****
  • Location: Indiana/Kanton Bern
  • Posts: 475
  • Cheeses: 50
  • Default personal text
Re: Gruyère attempt with questions
« Reply #25 on: October 01, 2013, 06:51:15 PM »
OK here is the deal with BL

if you have slime, you have them. Color is not indicative of BL, it is just indicative of certain strains. You who have these problems just have a dominant strain native that doesn't happen to produce a deep color early on, but I assure you it will be noticeable as the cheese matures.

Spots also are fairly common in 'wild washes' and may be indicative of a fungus or yeast, but most often just mean you have a few varietys of BL or similar bacterial cultures growing on the surface. This is common in Europe, and it too will diminish with time.

The deep colors of wild BL cheeses often come out with time -after a few months of drying time, they will turn into more of a golden brown (never looked into this, it is likely either due to a switch in metabolism or perhaps a different strain of bacteria takes over in dryer conditions)

Unless you are lucky, you are NOT going to get red or orange out of wild BL. If I want color to my rind, I achieve this by tweaking my wash ingredients. If I want red, I use something with some reddish hue to it (like cider) if I want purple, I use red wine, etc. If you are picky about getting colored BL rinds, you may be best to colonize your wash with a commercial culture.

All washing for an extra week will do is generate a thicker rind, which for most people is not desired. Think of it this way, the more wash you do, the more slime you make. That slime dries out and a new layer form on top of it. SO if I wash for 14 days, I will get a heavy crusty rind once it dries out. Unless I am going to age this cheese for 5 years, there is no need for me to wash it that long. Your BL have colonized the cheese almost always within the FIRST DAY, maybe the second day if your cheese is isolated in a ripening box. From this point on, washing duration just thickens the eventual hard rind.

10 days is the guideline for most aged cheeses, if you only want 4 or 6 months, you could wash for 7 or 8 days and be fine. If you want a 2 or 3 month cheese, you could probably get away with 5 days.

Mike, your cheese most certainly has a well developed wild BL rind, this looks precisely like what our cheeses in Switzerland look like when they leave the initial washing and go down into the aging cellar. Just watch as it dries, the color will come then. The first phase, as I have before pointed out, is slimy and nasty and somewhat unappetizing for the inexperienced. It just gets better after this.

Note that the type of white wine used has a pronounced impact on the color too. In general, the more color to your wine, the more color to your cheese.

Actually the more I look at that cheese, the more perfect it looks to me. In my opinion, you have hit the nail right on the head, And I'll give you a cheese for your fine work!
Gut gibt's der schwiizer Chäser

Online Alpkäserei

  • Mature Cheese
  • ****
  • Location: Indiana/Kanton Bern
  • Posts: 475
  • Cheeses: 50
  • Default personal text
Re: Gruyère attempt with questions
« Reply #26 on: October 01, 2013, 06:53:10 PM »
as for the board,

it usually will stick a little bit. You can use a mat if that makes you feel good, but I never do.
Gut gibt's der schwiizer Chäser

Offline Mike Richards

  • Mature Cheese
  • ****
  • Location: colorado springs, co
  • Posts: 445
  • Cheeses: 19
Re: Gruyère attempt with questions
« Reply #27 on: October 02, 2013, 09:40:47 AM »
Thanks for the help, Alp.  Your post makes me feel better.  I look forward to seeing what happens with this guy now.
If only I could make cheese as well as I grow a mustache...

Offline Spellogue

  • Michael
  • Mature Cheese
  • ****
  • Location: Ohio
  • Posts: 301
  • Cheeses: 14
  • Default personal text
Re: Gruyère attempt with questions
« Reply #28 on: October 02, 2013, 01:46:48 PM »
10 days is the guideline for most aged cheeses...

Guess I could have stopped washing my semi-hard chevrotin about two weeks ago.  Do you still do a periodic maintenance wash after this period?  Say every 10 days or so?  Or do you find that generally unnecessary?
I can resist anything but temptation.      ~ Oscar Wilde

Online Alpkäserei

  • Mature Cheese
  • ****
  • Location: Indiana/Kanton Bern
  • Posts: 475
  • Cheeses: 50
  • Default personal text
Re: Gruyère attempt with questions
« Reply #29 on: October 02, 2013, 02:11:41 PM »
Once a week or so for the next 2 or 3 months, then just a rub down on occasion IF it wants to grow strange things (it will do so if your environment is heavily contaminated -mine always want to grow a strange brown powdery mold that I have never been able to identify)
Gut gibt's der schwiizer Chäser