Author Topic: Cornelius's Camembert #1, 3/28/2009  (Read 1168 times)

Offline Cornelius

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Cornelius's Camembert #1, 3/28/2009
« on: April 24, 2009, 01:38:07 PM »
Unfortunately I don't have any photographs to document the making of this cheese (I didn't start taking pictures of the process until last week when I found this forum in search of answers ...). I made this cheese March 28th and was going to let it ripen longer, but two days ago I was in the middle of making a new batch and needed to verify my salt levels. I had previously over-salted 5-6 batches, decreasing the amount on the last two ... I have now settled at just under 2% of weight.

All that aside, I pulled the cheese out of the fridge and let it acclimate for an hour and was quite surprised by the result. How did it manage to ripen so quickly? I am glad I tried it when I did and I am somewhat worried about some of the ones I made as early as February 28th (they're still in the fridge, but I know they are inedible because of their salt content - I am just keeping them to see what happens with time). This one had some amonia to it, but not too much. It was beautifully creamy and almost sweet (I measured the PH at 6.97 dead center, right in the goo - at the time I placed it into my cave the PH read 4.62). As you can see from the photograph, it didn't ripen as much right around the spot where I had probed it with my PH meter during the early days (I since then make a little 2x1 inch cheese on the side that I can stick my meter into without ruining the beauty of potential winner).

Does anyone know why it wouldn't have ripened right where I probed it? And what is your opinion on readiness of this cheese?


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Offline Cornelius

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Re: Cornelius's Camembert #1, 3/28/2009
« Reply #1 on: April 27, 2009, 04:20:08 PM »
OK, I thought I would update on my worries about some of the older Bries in my Fridge. I had mentioned one batch from Feb 28th, as it turns out ... my notes disclosed to me that I had actually made the cheese January 21st and the 2/8 label on it was the day I packaged it and moved it to my regular fridge.

I cut it open right out of the fridge because I wanted to see the inside texture before it all melted away. I was quite happy with the thin mold rind and that it was fully attached everywhere. Also, the core was ripened at an equal rate throughout, perfectly cream and no crumble at all (I hope this is visible in the photograph). There was a fair reddish/grew color tonality just under the white mold. Amonia was present and pleasant, salt was out of control - I expected this, but it was a disappointment nonetheless and did not allow me to judge the real flavor properly.

This was the last from that batch - the other ones are from March 28 and on ...

Just for the fun of it, I measured the PH before eating it: the center was at 6.97 and the rind was at 7.39 - I was amazed by this difference and the fact that it was dangerously alkaline, ready to host a variety of bacteria and molds that didn't like it while it was still acidic (mind you, this cheese started its ripening on 1/23 at a PH level of 4.69).
« Last Edit: April 27, 2009, 06:27:28 PM by Cornelius »

Offline John (CH)

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Re: Cornelius's Camembert #1, 3/28/2009
« Reply #2 on: April 28, 2009, 05:08:44 AM »
Cornelius, I am very very envious!

Your later Feb 28 batch (top picture) cut after 27 days is simply beautiful! I'm guessing here that the reason P candidum gives a rind is the same reason you got a rind around where you put your pH probe, on right edge of picture. In the hole where you inserted the probe is where surface mold developed. So seems normal to me. On readiness, while it is a matter of taste, I'd say perfect, I researched this cheese and made a summary of age and consuming here.

Your earlier Jan 21 over salted Brie batch (bottom picture) when cut at 3.1 months age is nicely soft throughout and as you said still cold fridge so no oozing of pate apparent. Is 7.39 dangerously alkaline, from my highschool chemistry, 7.0 is neutral?

Would love some more details on how you are making and aging as yours are coming out great and mine not :'(! But I see that you ahve soime in your next batch . . . thx.

Congrats again, very envious.

Offline Cornelius

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Re: Cornelius's Camembert #1, 3/28/2009
« Reply #3 on: April 28, 2009, 07:23:30 AM »
I am excited you like it, thanks!  ;D

The probe thing makes perfect sense, my brain just didn't make the connection - it simply is an extended surface area with different riping characteristics to the center.

I know 7.39 is not dangerously alkaline for us to consume, just as far as not deterring bacteria from taking over. I guess the cheese's initial low pH and high salt content on the surface keps everything but the good guys out ... once they are ripe others move in  ;)

I will update batch #2 post as things progress.

Offline Cartierusm

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Re: Cornelius's Camembert #1, 3/28/2009
« Reply #4 on: April 28, 2009, 01:05:35 PM »
The top pics look perfect, good job.
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Offline chilipepper

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Re: Cornelius's Camembert #1, 3/28/2009
« Reply #5 on: April 28, 2009, 03:24:40 PM »
Cornelius, Looks very good.  How long was the cheese in the first post sitting at room temp.  You mentioned melting away, do you mean it turned to goo after sitting out, or that you actually melted it?  I have one batch right now that looks good out of the fridge but if you let it sit for a while it turns to a puddle.  :-\

Offline Cornelius

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Re: Cornelius's Camembert #1, 3/28/2009
« Reply #6 on: April 28, 2009, 06:00:39 PM »
Many thanks for your kind words.

To be honest,I don't remember how long the cheese had been sitting at room temp, but it must have been one hour plus. By melting I mean turning to goo, the second one didn't turn quite as runny - to some degree I think cutting it open was to blame as a thin skin formed, of keeping it all together.