Author Topic: Skim + Cream: Silly book editor...silly me.  (Read 637 times)

Offline Mike Richards

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Skim + Cream: Silly book editor...silly me.
« on: October 06, 2013, 10:16:22 PM »
I was reading yet another cheese making book when I was surprised by an error in the text.  The author was explaining that using skim milk + cream was a better option than using homogenized milk.  The author then said, as a good rule of thumb, to use 1 pint heavy cream/gallon skim to approximate 1 gallon whole.  I know, right?  Everyone knows you should use 1/2 pint cream...I mean, I've been doing that for almost a year now...I'll even prove it by running the numbers.   :o Wait...I'm wrong.

I've been using half the needed cream in my cheeses for a year now?!  For the love!

My wife, when I explained how embarrassed I was replied, "You shouldn't be embarrassed.  You should be happy.  The cheese you make isn't really that good, and maybe this is why."  Ouch.  :'( Not only am I embarrassed, but now I'm a little wounded, too.

Oh well...hopefully it won't take me another year to recognize other major mistakes I'm making.
If only I could make cheese as well as I grow a mustache...


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Offline linuxboy

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Re: Skim + Cream: Silly book editor...silly me.
« Reply #1 on: October 06, 2013, 10:56:45 PM »
Even for that, it depends on the processing. Of fat is removed first before homogenization, yes the skim milk has better quality protein. If after, then it doesn't matter. It's hit and miss what you'll get from the various plants. If you're making hard cheese, almost all store milk is unsuitable. It will not age out well. Some super low moisture styles like parm will be moderately edible
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Offline Tiarella

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Re: Skim + Cream: Silly book editor...silly me.
« Reply #2 on: October 07, 2013, 06:15:15 AM »
Mike, I wish you lived close to us.  You could get goat milk from us and not worry about this cream stuff or any ouches.  :)  AND....I'd even babysit sometimes since I love kids and mine are grown.  I guess it could get dangerous though because I could imagine with another cheese person around I'd end up borrowing a backhoe and digging a cheese cave.....and what next?!?!?!
All sounds like fun though.

But seriously, where did you get your original 1/2 cup cream suggestion from?  Was it another book?  I hope you have amazing successes now that you have this bit worked out!  You're a lovely and inventive cheesemaker and I always love to read about what you're making so cheese onwards!!

Offline Mike Richards

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Re: Skim + Cream: Silly book editor...silly me.
« Reply #3 on: October 07, 2013, 10:50:21 AM »
LB--Someday I'll get my milk from a farmer or an animal, but for now, stores are my best option.  I do look forward to that improvement, though.

Tia--I'm applying to MIT for my PhD.  If I get accepted (unlikely), perhaps my family and I will come visit you.  I'd gladly help you dig a cheese cave and you would be more than welcome to take the kids--they're a handful.  I think my mistake was the result of a unit conversion issue (my students will appreciate the problem when I tell them about it tomorrow).  I believe, but don't remember exactly, that I read in another book that it was 1 pint/gallon.  I had just started making 4 gallon batches, and I probably thought, "1 pint/gallon, 4 pints/quart, so 1 quart/4 gallons."  I have kept 1 quart/4 gallons in my mind since--until yesterday.  Thanks for the encouragement.  I've gotten over the embarrassment and disappointment and now I'm really looking forward to what cheeses made from "whole" milk will taste like.
If only I could make cheese as well as I grow a mustache...

Offline Sailor Con Queso

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Re: Skim + Cream: Silly book editor...silly me.
« Reply #4 on: October 07, 2013, 11:23:20 AM »
Mike - you have to take everything you read with a grain of salt. Especially in cheesemaking, there's always more than one way to "skin a cat". Why are you using skim+cream at all? Almost all store bought creams are ultra-pasteurized and your store bought skim is probably over processed as well. So IMHO you would be better off and get more flavorful cheeses with straight whole milk. There are lots of good or even award-winning cheeses made from pasteurized milk. You should look for a non-homogenized milk, preferably low-temperature pasteurized.
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Offline Mike Richards

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Re: Skim + Cream: Silly book editor...silly me.
« Reply #5 on: October 07, 2013, 01:20:07 PM »
Sailor--now that I realized I'd need to add twice as much cream, the cost of a non-homogenized milk isn't so bad.  I recently started trying different brands of milk to see if I could tell a difference.  I think I'll go see what non-homogenized brands I have available...

IIRC, I started using skim + cream because I understood that the cream in homogenized milk broke down into less desirable components leading to non-ideal flavors--with the exception of blue cheeses.
If only I could make cheese as well as I grow a mustache...

Offline Geo

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Re: Skim + Cream: Silly book editor...silly me.
« Reply #6 on: October 07, 2013, 02:24:56 PM »
Mike, ouch indeed!  :o

But if it means you're going to be able to make better cheeses...I always feel that you can't make anything better than the raw ingredients.

Offline Tiarella

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Re: Skim + Cream: Silly book editor...silly me.
« Reply #7 on: October 07, 2013, 04:44:02 PM »
Mike,  would happily have you and your family visit!  What fun!!  I'll even be on my best behavior and refrain from hiding goats in your car.  Just because I care.   ;D

Offline Boofer

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Re: Skim + Cream: Silly book editor...silly me.
« Reply #8 on: October 08, 2013, 08:21:57 AM »
4 pints/quart
???

Ah, there's the problem...a conversion inversion.... ;)

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