Author Topic: Cognac washed Gouda  (Read 715 times)

Offline JimSteel

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Cognac washed Gouda
« on: April 06, 2014, 07:29:35 PM »
I Wanted to try something different.  My friend and I pretend to be Remy-Martin connoisseurs (even though we hate the stuff) due to some deep-rooted-inside-joke-tradition.  I told him I'd make a cheese and wash it with some fine VSOP cognac.  As per my usual routine, I didn't read deeply into "alcohol washing" until after I made the cheese.  Turns out people don't usually wash the rind with pure liquor in the cheese biz much. (I see lots of curd washing and also adding a bit of alcohol into a brine solution like Alp)  Oh well, I'm going ahead with it anyway.

 I initially was not going to make a thread about this cheese since it's success hangs in the balance, but JeffHamm convinced me otherwise.  Hopefully this make doesn't go the same way as my Chocolate milk cheese did........ yikes.

Here is what I want to accomplish:
1. A cheese that tastes a bit like cognac.
2. A natural rind cheese, free from the tastes of mold and B.linens (I do not want a traditional wash as in Alp's post where linens is a big player.)

Here's my abbreviated make:

4L PH whole milk.
Cacl, 1.5ml Rennet
1/8tsp meso, 1/8tsp aroma

1. Raise to 29C, add CaCl
2. inoculate with cultures, stir, add rennet, stir
3. wait 45 mins, cut curd 1.5cm (very poor curd set)
4. rest 5, stir 5, rest 5, stir 5, rest 5. (curd was demolished into rice grain sized pieces)
5. Remove 10% of whey, replace with 60C water
6. stir 10
7. remove 1/3 of whey replace with 45C
8. temp is now 37C, hold for 20 mins, occasional stirring. (recipe calls for 20 mins of stirring, but I figured enough water was removed from curd already)
9. rest 10
10. pack, press at 10lbs, flipping occasionally.  pressed over night
11. ~20% brine for 2 hours.

12.  Air dry for 2 days.
13.  Began washing with a mixture.  50% St. Remy cognac, 50% water. "pinch of salt" then i poured in a tbsp of my linens brine.
       (brine should be at ~18-20% alcohol.)

If you have any tips or thought, please feel free to ask or tell.  Here's a picture


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Offline Anonymous

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Re: Cognac washed Gouda
« Reply #1 on: April 06, 2014, 10:16:23 PM »
Fun experiment! Can't wait to see the results! How long do you plan to age?

Come to think of it, isn't a warm-washed curd, b-linens rind-washed cheese a St-Paulin?Not sure, but me thinks it will end up a Cognac flavoured St-Paulin/Port Salut.
« Last Edit: April 06, 2014, 10:23:56 PM by Spoons »

Offline JimSteel

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Re: Cognac washed Gouda
« Reply #2 on: April 06, 2014, 11:28:19 PM »
A bit different than my Port Salut.  Switch the aroma for linens.  Less washing too.  I can't see the linens in the mix surviving the alcohol conditions, but I might be wrong.  I just poured some in because it was lying around.

I plan to age it as long as I can up to 2 months.

Offline Al Lewis

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Re: Cognac washed Gouda
« Reply #3 on: April 07, 2014, 11:23:25 AM »
Been misting mine with straight cognac.  Smells great and keeps the molds away. ;D

Offline JimSteel

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Re: Cognac washed Gouda
« Reply #4 on: May 06, 2014, 06:52:17 AM »
Update.  Been washing the cheese very lightly every second day, top, bottom and sides.  The edge has a really hard, smooth rind, the top and bottom not so much.  I am also getting a good bit of linens development.  I had assumed the alcohol content would stop it, but that's not the case.  It smells like cognac for the most part, sometimes a bit moldy before I wash it.

My goal to keep it "dry" and only use a light washing regimen to kill invasives seems to be going well so far.


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Offline Alpkäserei

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Re: Cognac washed Gouda
« Reply #5 on: May 06, 2014, 12:13:42 PM »
Alcohol does not create a sterile rind, it just makes a rind where good things are going to grow, because it kills off the molds and the worst of the yeasts. B linens is one of the bacteria that will thrive. You need this to happen, or else you will not actually have a rind.

The protective rind is the the chemical byproduct of the action of yeasts and bacteria on the surface of the cheese

And for the record, you can wash with straight liquor. You will just have a much stronger rind flavor. This is a fine practice for cheeses that aren't going to be aged very long, the stronger flavored rind will give it more dimension (as opposed to a long aged, well-matured cheese that gets dimension from age)

I am taking to washing and rubbing my 'Hirtechäs' or Herdsman's cheeses (like Mutschli, Raclette, other short aged cheese) with more complex brines for this very reason.
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Offline JimSteel

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Re: Cognac washed Gouda
« Reply #6 on: May 06, 2014, 08:46:35 PM »
Thanks for the input Alp.  I actually started the wash regimen on my latest Port Salut just moments before writing this post.  I've been having some issues with them recently, so I've decided to add a bit of red wine into the wash.  I know you are a big fan of this treatment for your Alpine cheeses and am hoping it has a positive effect on my cheeses.  I was not aware that alcohol would benefit a linens rind to the extent you suggest.

Wish me luck. :D

Offline JimSteel

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Re: Cognac washed Gouda
« Reply #7 on: June 16, 2014, 10:05:04 AM »
Here's my cognac washed gouda.  It turned out quite interesting.

- Was a mix between a gouda and a washed rind, I guess we could expect that. The texture and flavour were not consistent through the entire cheese though. The core and edges had a very different character.
- The centre of the cheese, where most of the moisture was retained was very creamy and tasted very strongly of washed rind.  As you travel outward toward the circular edges, where the cheese was able to dry more, it tasted and felt more like a gouda.  About an inch inward from the rind, the cheese was actually quite firm.
- When eating a wedge, it was interesting to start in the middle and eat toward the rind.  Since the flavour was so strong in the centre, by the time I reached the rind, I could barely tastes the "linens" and noticed other, nuttier flavours.
- Did not taste like cognac at all.

This was a neat experiment, which I will probably repeat, but next time I will likely wash with pure cognac and a touch of salt.  I'd like to see if I can avoid linens flavour completely so that I would be able to use this technique on other natural rind cheeses.  Again, I don't have the facilities to age many types of cheese properly, so I work with what I can.

Offline Anonymous

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Re: Cognac washed Gouda
« Reply #8 on: June 16, 2014, 10:24:34 AM »
Wow, Pretty cool experiment! The cognac profile occurs naturally after a year or so of aging. At least I find that an aged gouda has a cognac-sweet-ish taste to it.

A cheese for you for diving into something new!

Offline Geo

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Re: Cognac washed Gouda
« Reply #9 on: June 16, 2014, 05:40:20 PM »
I'll add to your cheeses. What a fascinating experiment.


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Online JeffHamm

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Re: Cognac washed Gouda
« Reply #10 on: June 16, 2014, 07:00:30 PM »
Have another cheese!  That's a great looking wheel.  The rind looks fantastic.  Well done.

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Offline Boofer

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Re: Cognac washed Gouda
« Reply #11 on: June 16, 2014, 09:30:23 PM »
Very nicely executed. I love the translucency at the rind.

From someone who enjoys an occasional brandy, a cheese is dispatched hurtling towards you. :D

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Offline JimSteel

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Re: Cognac washed Gouda
« Reply #12 on: June 16, 2014, 09:58:59 PM »
Thanks for the cheeses everyone.  Though there is but a sliver of this one left!

Offline Geo

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Re: Cognac washed Gouda
« Reply #13 on: June 16, 2014, 10:59:02 PM »
That's always the best compliment of all.  :)

Offline jwalker

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Re: Cognac washed Gouda
« Reply #14 on: June 17, 2014, 08:09:00 AM »
Ahhhhh.........Gouda , one of my favorite cheeses !

I had to chuckle , in your original post you said you were trying to avoid a linens flavor , but then you put some of your linens wash in it any way , thinking the alcohol would kill it , so you ended up with a linens rind anyway.  ;D

I would have though it wouldn't have survived the Cognac as well , so now we know.

But it turned out a beautiful looking cheese , I have made many Goudas , but always waxed , coated , or both , I will have to try a natural liquor washed rind myself.

Another cheese to you !
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