Author Topic: Stilton -- Milling and Salting  (Read 2294 times)

Offline Baby Chee

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Stilton -- Milling and Salting
« on: September 30, 2009, 03:36:45 PM »
I started my second Stilton today and everything went exceptionally well until...

I milled and salted:  I had the dried load of curd in the cloth, opened it, cut it into chunks with a knife, threw on the salt, then milled... and inside the ball was an obscene pocket of moisture at the center.  I now understand why people dry in several chunks.

Anyway, the stuff is salted and milled, though it was wet.  I re-wrapped, tightened the cheese cloth, put a 10 lb. weight on it, and it's been sitting in the sink on a draining mat.

Will salting at such a time change dynamic?
What is the point of the salting? (To cure the exterior of the chunks or something else aside from flavor?)
Any advice?

I'm not too worried about the final cheese at this time because when they hit the molds I'll drop them in a 60ºF cheese cave away from stray molds.  Should I be worried?
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Offline Sailor Con Queso

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Re: Stilton -- Milling and Salting
« Reply #1 on: September 30, 2009, 10:36:23 PM »
Salt slows down bacterial growth so the cheese doesn't acidify too much or too quickly. Salt also helps draw whey out of the curds especially with an open textured blue.

If a recipe calls for salt, always use exactly the amount called for. Too much or too little may change how your cheese turns out.

Keep in mind that you can NOT use table salt. The iodine will be detrimental to the bacteria. Kosher salt is good, but this time of year canning salt is cheap and readily available.

Stilton should have a light overnight pressing BEFORE you salt to eliminate some of the excess whey.
A moldy Stilton is a thing of beauty. Yes, you eat the rind. - Ed
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Offline Baby Chee

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Re: Stilton -- Milling and Salting
« Reply #2 on: October 01, 2009, 10:47:32 AM »
Good to know!  Thanks.  I've been using the Morton Salt so far... which (until I check the box) I assume is not optimum.
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Offline Sailor Con Queso

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Re: Stilton -- Milling and Salting
« Reply #3 on: October 01, 2009, 12:46:57 PM »
You've been using Morton table salt - with iodine???

The iodine will either kill or seriously impact the bacteria. Then bad bacteria have an opportunity to take over. Might lead to stinky cheese.  ;D
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Offline Baby Chee

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Re: Stilton -- Milling and Salting
« Reply #4 on: October 01, 2009, 02:26:44 PM »
Ah!  The explanation!

Ay recommendations on where to buy good, cheap, loads-of-salt?
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Offline Sailor Con Queso

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Re: Stilton -- Milling and Salting
« Reply #5 on: October 01, 2009, 03:30:34 PM »
Pickling salt - Wal-Mart, Lowes, any grocery store.
A moldy Stilton is a thing of beauty. Yes, you eat the rind. - Ed
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Offline DeejayDebi

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Re: Stilton -- Milling and Salting
« Reply #6 on: October 01, 2009, 10:05:49 PM »
I get kosher salt in 3 pound boxes but I wish I could find 50 pound boxes I go through a lot of salt!

Offline Baby Chee

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Re: Stilton -- Milling and Salting
« Reply #7 on: October 01, 2009, 10:09:07 PM »
Thanks, SCQ--I'll look into that ASAP.

Debi, I thought I saw it on Samsclub.com, but was mistaken.  It was normal salt which is iodized.  Is sea salt appropriate?  Evaporated sea salt obviously has no iodine (assuming it wasn't contaminated).  I'm not sure what makes a salt kosher or "cheese" salt.
http://www.saltworks.us/shop/product.asp?idProduct=102

Pages like that make me wonder what is different between "spa salt" and regular edible sea salt.  Isn't evaporated sea salt just all done the same way?
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Offline Sailor Con Queso

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Re: Stilton -- Milling and Salting
« Reply #8 on: October 01, 2009, 10:31:10 PM »
Kosher salt is generally larger grains than pickling salt. There's really no such thing as "cheese salt". Just avoid the iodine.
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Offline DeejayDebi

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Re: Stilton -- Milling and Salting
« Reply #9 on: October 01, 2009, 10:45:14 PM »
Sea salt will work to. Much like kosher salt which is sold in larger boxes here you may fine you need to run it through a blender if you are mixingit in the curds.


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Offline Aris

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Re: Stilton -- Milling and Salting
« Reply #10 on: October 02, 2009, 03:59:51 AM »
Is it ok to use cheap Rock Salt for cheese making? 

Offline Baby Chee

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Re: Stilton -- Milling and Salting
« Reply #11 on: October 02, 2009, 06:23:19 AM »
I saw "cheese salt" sold somewhere, maybe Leeners, but the description was just flaked salt for easier dissolution.

That one salt site has sea salt for as little as $1.15 a lb, if I remember right.  And they have 50 lb bags.
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Re: Stilton -- Milling and Salting
« Reply #12 on: October 02, 2009, 01:37:15 PM »
I personally wouldn't use rock salt. It's not food grade and may be loaded with contaminants.

"Cheese Salt" is just an excuse to charge more. ;D

If you are adding salt directly to curds, small grain like pickling salt is probably better because it will spread more evenly. If you are using it for brine or rind rubbing, larger grain, like Kosher, is probably better. It really comes down to a matter of choice.

The commercial guys are buyiong large volumes somewhere.
A moldy Stilton is a thing of beauty. Yes, you eat the rind. - Ed
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Offline Baby Chee

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Re: Stilton -- Milling and Salting
« Reply #13 on: October 02, 2009, 02:13:53 PM »
I got a couple boxes of that Morton pickling salt from Walmarts.  Thanks!  I'll be using that from here on.
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Offline linuxboy

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Re: Stilton -- Milling and Salting
« Reply #14 on: October 02, 2009, 03:26:43 PM »
Mortons has bulk salt, but you do need to order it. I've seen similar flake salt at restaurant and meat processing supply places. It comes in 50 or 80 lb bags, and should be 15-30 cents/lb depending where you are.

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