Author Topic: Confused trying to make manchego type and milk not coagulating...  (Read 356 times)

Offline sarak

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OK, I guess I was getting a little cocky today and I decided for my third hard cheese I would try a manchego type using 1 gallon of milk from my Nigerian goat and 1 gallon of pasteurized, un-homogenized cow milk (the good stuff that comes in the glass bottles at Whole Foods).  I am basically following the recipe for the saffron infused manchego in aArtisan Cheesemaking at Home, except that I am not adding saffron and I am using 1/2 packet of the mesophilic culture C101 from New England Cheesemaking and 1/2 packet of their thermophilic culture C201.  I pasteurized the goat milk in a double-boiler set up to 145F for 30 minutes, then cooled in an ice bath to about 100F, then I added the (pretty cold) cow milk and after first overheating it to nearly 100F (because I was silly and put it back in the water bath), I cooled the whole thing down to 86F and then added the cultures.

The recipe said to wait 30-45 minutes for a clean cut.  It has been over an hour and 15 minutes, and it is just now beginning to (slowly) coagulate.  The temp did drop over the past hour from 86F to 84F.  So I put it in a water bath and raised and it is SLOWLY coming back up to temp. However, my crude set up with a space heater near the pot did at least keep it steady at 86F for 1 1/2 hrs (ripening time and first 45 minutes after addition of rennet.  I made a cheddar and a Havarti this week, and both set like magic.

So... without much experience, and with so many variables changed, I am not sure what is causing the delay and whether or not it is anything I need to worry about.  My first cheese was all goat milk, the second, 7/8ths milk from my goat with one quart of goat milk from the store.  I pasteurized my goat milk just prior to making cheese in both cases.  I used the C101 mesophilic cultures with both prior cheeses with no problems.  Given all that, I think I have narrowed it down to either the addition of cow milk, the fact that the cow milk was unhomogenized, adding cold milk to warm milk, the thermophilic culture (that I had not used before), or... I don't know.  The rennet is the same calf rennet I used before, and I added the calcium chloride prior to the rennet as before.  I did not add lipase. 

When I split the packets of mesophilic and thermophilic cultures, I wrapped up the half of each I didn't use together in tin foil and then put it back in the freezer.  If it IS the culture, I'd rather know now and order more if I need to.

Any insight is GREATLY appreciated.



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Offline sarak

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Re: Confused trying to make manchego type and milk not coagulating...
« Reply #1 on: January 04, 2014, 09:42:06 PM »
As a follow-up, after I wrote the previous post, I check and it was totally coagulated and clearly separated from the whey.  The temp was 86.  Could 2 degrees make THAT much of a difference?????

Offline Digitalsmgital

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Re: Confused trying to make manchego type and milk not coagulating...
« Reply #2 on: January 04, 2014, 10:33:14 PM »
Not sure but the cold milk addition to the warm milk could be the culprit...many recipes call for gradual heating over specific periods, e.g. "1 degree every two minutes". Those micelles are particular about temperature!  ;)
Regards, Dave

Offline sarak

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and it gets worse...
« Reply #3 on: January 04, 2014, 10:44:06 PM »
Crud.  That makes sense. 

If you can believe it, the story gets worse...

While trying to use the whisk to cut it to "rice sized" pieces, the temp went up over 15 minutes to 106 while it was in the water bath.  No wonder the buggers were matting together.  So I guess I cooked while I was still cutting...  And the whey - it went from a cloudy green to ... well, it looks like milk!

After I spooned the drained curds into the mold, it was about 1/2 of the volume of the other two cheeses I made. I am guessing that a good amount of that protein and fat is back in the whey (if it is possible).  Oh well.  I'll press it anyway and see how it is.  And tomorrow my Great Pyrenees will get another delicious "protein shake".




Offline Digitalsmgital

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Re: Confused trying to make manchego type and milk not coagulating...
« Reply #4 on: January 04, 2014, 10:56:20 PM »
It's only fair that your dog guards the livestock and reaps the rewards!  ;D
Regards, Dave


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Offline sarak

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Re: Confused trying to make manchego type and milk not coagulating...
« Reply #5 on: January 04, 2014, 11:32:19 PM »
True.  He guards the milk supply... and he LOVES whey.  He and his sidekick were kind enough to take a 3lb roast off my hands the first night I tried to cook with a pressure cooker, too. 

Lessons learned:
Don't do anything to shock your milk's sensibilities.  Including mixing warm milk with cold milk, and excessive cursing.
Watch the temperature - closely!  (better to check the temp than spell-check your post on "CheeseForum.org")
Have something comforting and alcoholic on hand if things turn out badly, as well as a grateful, non-judgmental "waste receptacle".

:)

Offline Schnecken Slayer

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Re: Confused trying to make manchego type and milk not coagulating...
« Reply #6 on: January 05, 2014, 02:24:22 AM »
Wow, I made a saffron infused manchego about a month ago and found the curds also took twice as long to get a clean break.
Offhand I think it was supposed to be a 3x floc which would have been 3 x 13 ie 39 minutes and turned out to be about 90 minutes.
I also used half goat and half cow milk. (Goat milk is too expensive here at $4.50 per litre)
Strange!
-Bill
One day I will add something here...

Offline Pete S

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Re: Confused trying to make manchego type and milk not coagulating...
« Reply #7 on: January 05, 2014, 04:42:34 AM »
  I made the same recipe but used straight goats milk and no saffron .
it turned out great-- (probably one of my best flavored cheeses)-- with no problems.
 As soon as I start getting new goats milk it will be my first goat cheese.  Pete
THE MORE I LEARN----THE MORE THERE IS TO LEARN---PETE

Offline margaretsmall

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Re: Confused trying to make manchego type and milk not coagulating...
« Reply #8 on: January 05, 2014, 04:20:57 PM »
I've made this recipe without any problems if I remember correctly, but I'm away from home where my notes are so can't check the fine details of my make. As you say, with so many variables it's  hard to say why the coagulation time was so long, but it happens. A couple of possibilities, are you sure the cows milk was not UHT? Did pasteurisation of the goats milk take the temperature too high? Do you need to pasteurise your goats milk anyway, as this is a cheese you would age more than 60 days. If you are confident of your cleanliness in milking and storage, and your animal's health, it shouldn't be necessary and the results will be better. I don't know what the composition of Nigerian goat milk is, but my only source is Sanaan which is relatively low in solids and as a result I end up with  quite fragile curds and a relatively long flocculation time. You don't say when you added the rennet or at what temperature, that's a factor too. If you have doubts about your culture, use some to make a mother culture (look for Sailor's thread on this if you are unsure about it). If it sets, its not the thermo or meso.
Margaret