I made an asiago type cheese this weekend, adding a pinch of FD when the milk was still cool, and let it come up to temp slowly. Then I added the Thermo C starter. The make went along predictably until.... After stirring at 95degrees for about 20 mins, breaking up any larger chunks, I tested the whey pH and it was already 6.4, which was the ph for draining. So I went ahead with heating, and took it up to 106 over a period of 20 mins, tested again at 6.4 ph. So rather than stirring for a while at 106, I went ahead and heated it to 118 over another 20 mins. The drain pH varied on testing at 6.3 and 6.4, but the curd felt just right. So I thought I had "saved" the make. Pressing was fine over about 24 hours to get down to the right pH of 5.2, then into saturated brine for 8 hours. And I thought all was well, until.... this morning when I took it out of the brine, and there are several cracks in it... I am so disappointed and am wondering what this will mean for the final texture and flavor profile. When I look in the Caldwell book there is an example of a cheese just like mine and it suggests that this is a problem of over-cooking.
Suggestions... Will it just be chicken food?