Author Topic: Vacuum Bags Instead Of Wax For Aging Hard Cheeses  (Read 15595 times)

Offline reg

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Re: Vacuum Bags Instead Of Wax For Aging Hard Cheeses
« Reply #15 on: July 15, 2008, 06:26:36 AM »
morning CH. i would say that vac packing is the way to go from what i have experienced here. not as cute as the waxed but it works great.

again sealing or waxing at the right time is the key to the proceedure in my opinion. as of yet i still have not seen any water in the bags. both the manchego and the cheddar i have vac packed are still relatively soft but have not leaked a drop. as mentioned in another thread i may remove them from the vac pac and wax the faces and try to firm the body up a bit

reg
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Offline calgal98

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Re: Vacuum Bags Instead Of Wax For Aging Hard Cheeses
« Reply #16 on: September 06, 2008, 07:57:34 PM »
I'm terribly new to all of this, but it seems to me that the wax would breathe a bit whereas the sealer wouldn't allow that.  Please, feel free to correct me.  I'm so new I still LOVE vinegar cheese!! LOL

Offline reg

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Re: Vacuum Bags Instead Of Wax For Aging Hard Cheeses
« Reply #17 on: September 07, 2008, 06:15:05 AM »
morning calgal. to be honest i'm not sure if the wax coating would breath or not. just don't have enough experience in the cheese making field yet.

the way it looks to me at this point is to air dry until you get the texture/dryness you are looking for then vac pac to age. have an Alpine style cheese in vac pac as we speak so time will tell

reg
reg

Offline BoilerMaker

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Re: Vacuum Bags Instead Of Wax For Aging Hard Cheeses
« Reply #18 on: September 28, 2008, 03:00:03 PM »
I followed the lead from CH and bought a Reynolds Handi-Vac for a basic hard cheese that I made about a week ago. I sealed the cheese 3 days after I made it (it felt dry to the touch) and saw some liquid in the bag within a half hour. I let the cheese dry for 2 more days and then resealed it. As of today, seven days after the cheese was made, 2 days after I sealed it in the bag, these is still no water.

Offline John (CH)

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Re: Vacuum Bags Instead Of Wax For Aging Hard Cheeses
« Reply #19 on: September 29, 2008, 08:56:45 PM »
BoilerMaker, congrats, success, I've been using the bags steadily and work fine, as long as cheese is dry enough when seal.

To calgal98, you are probably right in that wax does breathe a little more than plastic (which also breathes). But the flexibility of the vacuum bags easily is really really nice :).


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Offline reg

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Re: Vacuum Bags Instead Of Wax For Aging Hard Cheeses
« Reply #20 on: October 07, 2008, 07:40:35 AM »
morning everyone. just wanted to update the progress with vac packing. Sunday night i had company and decided to open a bag of the Alpine that was made on July 15th. boys and girls this vac packing works ! my Alpine has aged significantly since my last taste test. seems like a totally different product now. this cheese has grown into something that i was not expecting at all.

it won't be long before i start making plenty of this style of cheese again.

reg
reg

Offline brandeeno

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Re: Vacuum Bags Instead Of Wax For Aging Hard Cheeses
« Reply #21 on: October 28, 2008, 01:36:58 PM »
Guys, what about taking this one step further (or is this could be one step back) and not even vacuum packing it? What about just using plain ole zip locks and sealing the cheese. There would be minimal air in there… anybody try this? think it would work? I guess I’m trying to be as cheap as possible for my first few cheeses, and would like to try using normal ziplocks, and I would attempt to suck as much air out as possible.

Offline SalMac

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Re: Vacuum Bags Instead Of Wax For Aging Hard Cheeses
« Reply #22 on: November 22, 2008, 11:00:44 AM »
Anyone got any recommendations for a good value vacuum packer?

Thanks

Sal

Offline John (CH)

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Re: Vacuum Bags Instead Of Wax For Aging Hard Cheeses
« Reply #23 on: November 22, 2008, 03:51:58 PM »
Brandeeno, good point which I've also subsequently thought about. If you squeeze the air out and then close remainder of zip it should work reasonably well.

SalMac, in my original post I had some info on the one I bought. I've since seen similar but using a simple cheap plunger. reg has a big expensive one. It all depends what you mean by vakue.

Offline Tea

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Re: Vacuum Bags Instead Of Wax For Aging Hard Cheeses
« Reply #24 on: November 22, 2008, 04:30:50 PM »
I have only used the zip lock bags, and it has worked well for me.  But as I don't have a vacuum  set, I can't say which would be better.  Having said that, I have only used them with cheeses that have been matured for around 2-3 mths.  I can't say how they would go for a long term maturing.


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Offline Tammy

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Re: Vacuum Bags Instead Of Wax For Aging Hard Cheeses
« Reply #25 on: February 22, 2009, 03:38:25 PM »
I am reviving an old post, but just wanted to incorporate my limited experience here.  When I first made hard cheese last winter, I vacuum sealed all of it.  I did not want to deal with the wax and I had a nice vacuum sealer already.  I felt, after making all of last winter's cheese and vacuum sealing it that perhaps it had not aged as well as it should have due to not being able to breathe. 

This year, I have not vacuum sealed the cheeses I have made.  So, I guess you could say that I am experimenting in reverse!  Seems to be typical for me to do things backwards!   :-\

Offline Cartierusm

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Re: Vacuum Bags Instead Of Wax For Aging Hard Cheeses
« Reply #26 on: February 23, 2009, 03:16:07 AM »
Well how did the two different methods make the cheese taste?
Life is like a box of chocolates sometimes too much rennet makes you kill people.

Offline Tammy

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Re: Vacuum Bags Instead Of Wax For Aging Hard Cheeses
« Reply #27 on: February 23, 2009, 07:45:36 AM »
Hands down, the taste is better in the cheese that was not vacuum sealed.  I think aging the cheese the desired amount of time and then vacuum sealing might be the way to go.  The vacuum sealing seems to hinder the aging process.  Or, at least that's my experience.  I would love to hear if anyone else has better success because the vacuum sealing is such an easy way to go.

Offline Cartierusm

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Re: Vacuum Bags Instead Of Wax For Aging Hard Cheeses
« Reply #28 on: February 23, 2009, 02:32:44 PM »
Thanks that's a good thing to know.
Life is like a box of chocolates sometimes too much rennet makes you kill people.

Offline BoilerMaker

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Re: Vacuum Bags Instead Of Wax For Aging Hard Cheeses
« Reply #29 on: March 06, 2009, 02:55:58 PM »
Updating on my earlier post, I have stopped vacuum packing my cheeses for aging.

Last fall over the course of a couple of months I made and packed five different cheeses into vacuum bags. One cheese started to grow some mold after about a month, so I opened it up and immediately noticed a rancid or sour smell. I cut off a small piece, ate it, and the result was not what I wanted. I ended up opening all the other cheeses I had packed in bags. I ended up throwing out four of the cheeses.

All of the cheeses I tossed were made from raw cows milk while the one that I kept was made from store bought milk. Not entirely sure what happened, but I'm guessing either the lack of air made ideal growing conditions for an anaerobic bacteria in raw milk that is not wanted in cheese making or the lack of air exchange allowed bad gases (CO2, ammonia, maybe others?) to build up ruining the cheese.

I've since been aging without anything covering my cheese (other than my cave). I have to deal with more mold, but all of the cheese has been good! When I start to eat the cheese, usually after aging for 4 weeks or so, I can vac pack cheese or put them into a ziploc bag without any ill effect.