Hi, I am 4 weeks into my first Muenster, and my first attempt at using B. Linens.
The recipe I followed was:
- Warm to 90° F stiring gently. Turn off heat.
- Sprinkle culture and B. linins over milk. Mix using up and down strokes. Let sit for 5 minutes.
- If using store bought milk then dissolve the calcium chloride in 1/4 cup pure water and mix well.
- Mix the rennet in 1/4 cup pure water and stir into milk for 1 minute. cover and set aside at same temperature for 45 minutes or until get good curd break.
- Leave for 40 minutes covered maintaining 90° or until a clean break is achieved.
- Cut the curds into 1/2 inch pieces, cover, settle curds and maintain temperature for 30 minutes.
- Strain curds in cheesecloth lined collander for 10 minutes then carefully laddle curds into molds. The curds are very soft and delicate at this stage!
- Cover - avoid drafts and drain for 24 hours, gently flipping cheeses several times.
- If curds are still to soft to handle after 24 hours wait another 5 or 6 hours
- Remove from molds and sprinkle each side with 1/4 teaspoon of salt then place on mat in a ripening container at 55°F and 85% humidity.
- Turn cheeses daily, remove whey for about 3 days or until no more whey is released.
- Wash cheeses every other day with cloth dipped in brine mix of 1 cup water and 2 teaspoons of salt.
- After about 10 days an orange smear will appear. Continue to wash cheeses every other day for at leat 2 weeks for small cheeses and 3 weeks for large cheeses.
- Ripen for up to 3 months
The recipe has you add B. Linens to the milk, so I did. I then learned that it really makes more sense spraying them on the surface, as mentioned in this post
. I never got the covering of red b.linens, I did get two red spots, one of which is visible in the pics attached. So after 14 days, I started spraying with a 10% brine with b.linens.
I has now been 4 weeks. The cheese has taken on a yellow, straw color, which I understand can be a color that is produced by b.linens (the actual color is not as deep yellow as the pics attached, but it is indeed slightly yellow). The cheese SMELLS like limburger, again a good sign, but it REALLY smells. The surface of the cheese is very soft, and deforms easily when handling it; it feels a bit more solid underneath about an 1/8 inch surface "slime". A white mold is visible, on the outside. I never added geo candidum, so I expect that is just natural yeast which may have come from some salted wine i was spraying on it for a little bit.
So my biggest question is where to go from here? I would like the surface to firm up, so I have stopped misting with brine. I could start wiping with brine to wipe away the surface, but I fear the slimy surface is a good thing, and I would just be losing cheese by doing that.
Have others got this slimy of a rind while doing washed rind cheeses?
How smelly is too smelly?
Suggestions on what steps to take next?