Author Topic: Feta curd is messed!  (Read 1617 times)

Offline JsTx

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Feta curd is messed!
« on: June 02, 2009, 10:41:29 PM »
Hey guys! First post here but I have been viewing the forums  for help and information for the last few months. I have made cheese about 5 or 6 times so far and I enjoy it very much. But all the sudden I have run into a few problems.

While making feta the curds had a very weak set. I got a clean break and the curds looked nice and structurally firm when cut but whenever I began stirring them they fell apart! This happened on 2 occasions.

The only thing different that I am doing is using store bought organic milk (Whole Foods). I will usually use a low temp pasteurized unhomogenized milk from a farmers market or sometimes its sold in a few small local grocery stores. The recipe has worked fine when I use the low temp pasteurized milk but on the 2 occasions I use the store bought stuff it hasn't worked. I am adding ¼ tsp calcium chloride per 2 gallons of milk. Any suggestions?

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Here is the recipe (up until the past I mess up) I am using if anyone is curious.

6 gallons cow milk (Remember When)
¾ tsp calcium chloride
¾ tsp MM100 (starter)
88 drops liquid calf rennet (4ml)
Kosher salt

Add starter and calcium chloride when milk reaches 70°F
Stir in evenly
Continue to heat milk to 90°F
Once milk reached 90°F let starter activate for 10 minutes
Add rennet diluted in 20x its volume and stir

Let coagulate for 30 minutes or until clean break
Cut curds into hazelnut size pieces

Rest curds for 10 minutes
Stir curds gently with curd spoon, stirring with your wrist in a circular motion for 15 minutes.
Rest curds for 5 minutes
Drain most of the whey until curd appears
« Last Edit: June 02, 2009, 11:02:40 PM by JsTx »


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Offline DeejayDebi

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Re: Feta curd is messed!
« Reply #1 on: June 02, 2009, 10:50:02 PM »
I am wondering if this is the ultra pasterized milk?

Offline JsTx

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Re: Feta curd is messed!
« Reply #2 on: June 02, 2009, 11:01:40 PM »
I wouldn't doubt it. It just says pasteurized and homogenized on the label

Offline Michelle

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Re: Feta curd is messed!
« Reply #3 on: September 27, 2009, 10:34:05 PM »
Your problem is right there.  You cannot use homogenised milk for cheese making.  The process of homogenisation physically changes the structure of the milk components and it won't form decent curds.  You must use un homogenised milk.  You can tell it's not homogenised if there is a layer of cream settled out on the top...
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Offline riha

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Re: Feta curd is messed!
« Reply #4 on: September 28, 2009, 02:00:29 AM »
Umm..? I thought the problem was the ultra-pasteurization, not homogenization? I use pasteurized & homogenized milk all the time and have understood that so do many others.



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Offline linuxboy

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Re: Feta curd is messed!
« Reply #5 on: September 28, 2009, 11:22:59 AM »
Homogenized milk is fine for cheesemaking. Ultrapasteurized is not. I've had curds fall apart on me like that before, even with CaCl2. It was either due to older milk, or bad milk quality. Switching milk brands worked.
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Offline Sailor Con Queso

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Re: Feta curd is messed!
« Reply #6 on: September 28, 2009, 11:37:50 AM »
I agree. Pasteurized/homogenized will work just fine.  I prefer non-homogenized because seems to give a better curd and higher yield.

Ultrapasteurized is not good. Change milk brands.
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Offline Tea

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Re: Feta curd is messed!
« Reply #7 on: September 29, 2009, 03:11:19 PM »
Ditto to Sailor, and even better if you can get your hands on some, is raw milk.

Offline John (CH)

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Re: Feta curd is messed!
« Reply #8 on: September 30, 2009, 06:33:55 PM »
JsTx, welcome to the forum, all I ever normally use is cheapo store bought pasterurized and homogenized whole cow's milk and no problems.

I have looked at same but more expensive Organic Milk in boutique section of grocery stores but some of them say Ultra Pasteurized, which when I tried once with store bought goat milk aI could not get a good curd set. Presumably manufacturers do that as want longer shelf life as farther to ship and doesn't move off shelves as fast as more popular cheapo milk. So as DeejayDebi says above, it may be UP milk. If not then next batch I'd up your rennet 25%.

FYI I made a "Coagulation Problems" webpage.