Author Topic: Farmhouse Cheddar Drying  (Read 6634 times)

Offline Boofer

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Re: Farmhouse Cheddar Drying
« Reply #30 on: November 22, 2009, 01:36:35 AM »
Sounds good to me. I will give it a try. Thanks for the tip. That might help to keep the nubbins from forming on the wheel too.

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Offline Jim & Rose

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Re: Farmhouse Cheddar Drying
« Reply #31 on: December 14, 2009, 07:27:04 PM »
This cheese will sit until at least the first part of February.... It still seems to be fine, we flip it about once per week now instead of once per day.

Offline DeejayDebi

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Re: Farmhouse Cheddar Drying
« Reply #32 on: December 14, 2009, 10:27:39 PM »
Good luck Jim!

Offline iratherfly

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Re: Farmhouse Cheddar Drying
« Reply #33 on: December 15, 2009, 08:21:24 PM »
Hey everyone, I am new to this forum and glad to find such a bunch of fellow cheese enthusiasts!

I was wondering if anyone can help:
Just made my first farmhouse style cheddar of 2 gal. non-homogenized pasteurized milk on Sunday.  After the draining, cheddaring and salting I ended up with fairly dry curd. (could be related to raising the temp. too quickly after cutting the curd).  I pressed it at 10 lbs x 15 minutes, turned and pressed at 20 Lbs x 12 hours, turned again for another 20 Lbs x 12 hours.

I was quite surprised to peel off the cheesecloth Monday evening to find a rather dry, matured cheese.  It has been out of the press for 6 hours and developed yellow rinding which I wouldn't expect so early on. It is dry to the touch and the drying board shows no signs of humidity accumulated underneath the cheese in the hours it spent on it.

Do you suppose I should wax it so soon? It is now Tuesday evening and I am afraid of losing this cheese as it dries out so fast.
I was thinking of putting it in a closed container with damp paper towel (towel not touching it) overnight to slightly reconstitute it first? Any thoughts? Advice?

Offline DeejayDebi

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Re: Farmhouse Cheddar Drying
« Reply #34 on: December 16, 2009, 09:20:04 PM »
I would not rush to wax as it could be to damp and form mold UNDER the wax. If you put it in a container that should slow down the drying somewhat. Three days is not much time.


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Offline iratherfly

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Re: Farmhouse Cheddar Drying
« Reply #35 on: December 16, 2009, 09:27:09 PM »
Thanks so much. I did wait until today. I figured that it stayed in the kitchen where temperature is a bit high and it may have been too exposed to cooking so I wanted to sanitize the surface. I didn't want to over-salt it though or dry it further because it was a pre-salted curd.

I ended up dipping it in heavy brine this morning; 15 minutes each side. I then washed it off quickly with brandy and let it re-dry. Looked really nice in the evening. Just done waxing it. In the fridge.

This is what it looked like! See can't tell it was dry :)

Offline Gürkan Yeniçeri

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Re: Farmhouse Cheddar Drying
« Reply #36 on: December 16, 2009, 09:39:48 PM »
Nice looking cheddars Iratherfly. Debi is right. If the outer skin is drying fast, interior would lock the moisture in and when you open the wax you will see whey allocated in between the wax and the cheese and even some mold started to grow. Dry them slowly under a certain humidity so that they dry evenly and slowly. This happened to me and the cheddar was just looking like feta in wax. I then removed the wax and put them in brine and consumed as feta.

If they turn out to be different than a cheddar, just change the name of the cheese :)

Offline iratherfly

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Re: Farmhouse Cheddar Drying
« Reply #37 on: December 17, 2009, 12:05:27 AM »
Yes, getting a feta wrapped in wax is certainly a good opportunity to rename a cheese.  I am becoming the master of mystery cheese lately; I usually name them something like 'Hanselicious' or 'Awkward', depending on my initial response to what was created.

The Cheddars were really dry to the touch by the time I waxed them (Only a faint trace of butterfat feeling on the rind). Eventually they did stay out for 3 days so I suppose it's all fine. I think that based on your advice I should probably play it safe; break one open in 30 days to make sure I don't have to come up with a new name, re-wax it and age 60-90 more days.

Offline sominus

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Re: Farmhouse Cheddar Drying
« Reply #38 on: December 17, 2009, 10:06:26 AM »
It seems that all the parties I've been invited to this year are "wine and cheese" tasting parties (and I have no complaint about that!)...  All of the cheese I tasted that I *really* liked were muslin wrapped and larded, then aged -- a 3 year old gouda, a 6 year old cheddar as well as a couple others that I don't remember well...  A 3 year old beemister comes to mind as well.

This makes me want to try this method out even more, and it would seem that with a cheddar that has a (suspected) high moisture, this would also be the best way to go?

Of course, I may not know what I'm talking about.. :-)

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Offline iratherfly

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Re: Farmhouse Cheddar Drying
« Reply #39 on: December 17, 2009, 03:05:05 PM »
Sominus, I envy your patience. I wish I could wait so long for cheese. Maybe Yoga or moving to Europe would make me a patient man.

I wonder how proper is aging in wax for so long vs rind aging.


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Offline Jim & Rose

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I cut the cheese
« Reply #40 on: January 26, 2010, 03:16:01 PM »
Well, 97 days later and I couldn't stand it any longer. I cut the cheese:


The texture and mouthfeel are ok for a farmhouse type, but the flavor just isn't there yet. I guess you could say somewhat of an acidic taste.   I put the large piece into a seal-a-meal thing and vacuum packed it for more aging.  I did the same to the smaller piece in a separate bag.  I did try to melt it and it melted quickly and uniformly.  I think this one just needs more time to get to where it could/should be.  We'll try it agin in March I guess.

Offline iratherfly

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Re: Farmhouse Cheddar Drying
« Reply #41 on: January 27, 2010, 02:03:09 AM »
You could just re-wax to seal each half.

I am still waiting on mine. Based on your photo I will probably wait until mid march for the small wheel and april-may for the larger one.  The Tomme I made this weekend will be ready before that ...so will the Edam I am going to make this coming weekend. I too hate the wait.

Offline DeejayDebi

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Re: Farmhouse Cheddar Drying
« Reply #42 on: January 30, 2010, 11:15:30 PM »
Waiting isn't as hard when yo have a full cave a cheeses. Then it's hard to keep track of what is ready. I keep a database so I know what's about to be ready. I was typing them into the outlook calender on my phone but I need to dump some stuff my memory card is full.

Offline iratherfly

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Re: Farmhouse Cheddar Drying
« Reply #43 on: February 01, 2010, 04:43:01 PM »
I have them labeled with a batch number (the recipe will tell me everything down to when was the cow milked and what feed it had - as long as I know). Also, every wheel has a set of dates on it: When it was made or aged, do not open before, best opened at etc.