Author Topic: 2nd try at a hard cheese  (Read 733 times)

Offline hydromojo

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2nd try at a hard cheese
« on: February 22, 2010, 01:22:59 AM »
My first attempt with trying out John's recipe of havarti (http://cheeseforum.org/forum/index.php/topic,2130.0.html) ended with the cheese going bad after 3 weeks.

For the second attempt.
I used a homemade mesophilic buttermilk starter. That was all I had along with the rennet. The milk used was less than an hour old. Followed all the steps including the weights at the specific times, except that the quantity of milk used was just 2 litres, which is all I can currently handle.

To start, I would not get a rind, even after a week in the refrigerator. The cheese didn’t completely dry out either so I’m hoping something good may happen. The odour is strong, kinda on the verge of going bad, but it didn’t taste too bad (nibbled an edge). I observed small localized patches of white powdery substance, keeping an eye out for the blue/black spots. After 3 weeks now, I observed some spots of blue mould. To remove these, I used a cloth dipped in brine and gently rubbed the entire cheese. I air dried this for about 12 hours after this.
Post this, the cheese has started ‘sweatnig’, if that’s what I can call it. Some oily stuff is seeping out which I pat dried with a paper towel. I’m returning this to the fridge in its perforated container to see what may happen.

I’m not too disappointed that this hasn’t worked as per the recipe coz I know there are a lot of things that could have gone wrong. But I’d still like to get some advice on what I may be doing wrong from you folk out there.

I do take care to sterilize my containers so am wondering whether its my storing mechanism that needs improvement.

Advice is greatly appreciated.

raol

Offline Alex

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Re: 2nd try at a hard cheese
« Reply #1 on: February 22, 2010, 02:15:21 AM »
Hi Raol,

I just wonder how do you make a Havarti from 2 liters of milk. It should be smaller than a Camembert and weighing about 150-250 gr. You'll have too much rind relatively to the inside. To get a natural rind after making, you have to salt brine the cheese and then dry it at room temp. White powder isn't harmfull, it's a kind of good mold your cheese cought from somewhere. The blue/green/black mold should be removed by rubbing with a mixture of kosher (coarse) salt + vinegar. Oily stuff may be fat expelled due to over drying (not enough humidity). To overcome this you can rub the surface with olive oil and wrap with "Saran". Anyway, keep an eye and watch against bad mold spots.

BTW-2 liters of milk is the for one Camembert wheel.
Alex-The Cheesepenter

Offline hydromojo

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Re: 2nd try at a hard cheese
« Reply #2 on: February 22, 2010, 11:52:29 PM »
Hi Alex

Thank you for the information. Yup, its a teeny piece of cheese as compared to the ones i see here. I did soak it in brine when first made for the required period and air dried it for a day. Thinking back, I may not have completely dried it out (point to note in future trials).
On it developing a larger rind than cheese, thats ok. I just want to perfect the recipe before using more milk.
Another development post the 'sweating' is that its smelling less spoilt, with a slightly sweetish aroma - not sure what this is going to turn out to be, but I'm curious.
I will do the oil rub and wrap next to see what happens.

Thanks for the help!

raol

Offline DeejayDebi

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Re: 2nd try at a hard cheese
« Reply #3 on: February 24, 2010, 07:59:10 PM »
Havarti doesn't have a rind for the most part. It should be nice and soft - kind of rubbery soft not buttery soft evenly throughout. Wrapping/vac packing it as soon as it dries will help insure this.