Author Topic: What should I do with my 2 week old wheel of Havarti?  (Read 793 times)

Offline marksto

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What should I do with my 2 week old wheel of Havarti?
« on: April 07, 2010, 08:52:27 PM »
I made a 4 lb wheel of Havarti 2 weeks ago for my third batch of cheese, following the instructions and recipe posted on cheesemaking.com (http://www.cheesemaking.com/store/pg/208-Havarti.html).

Everything is going well with it but I'm a bit unclear what I should be doing with it while aging/ripening. The instructions say: "The cheese is ripened while turning daily and wiping with a light brine (1tsp salt in a quart of water) every 2-3 days.- Keep temp ...59°F and 90% RH for 5 weeks (young) or 10-14 weeks (mature).
Then 1 Wk @ 54F 80% RH."

I'm following the instructions turning and wiping, but the recipe never specifies to cover or wrap the cheese. It is stored stored in a tupperware container in a temp controlled fridge at 58 degrees, no hygrometer but I have damp towels in it and it's plenty humid.

Just in the last few days the cheese has started to get quite a bit of mold, both white fuzz and dark spots. Rubbing with saltwater takes them off but I think I'll be fighting a losing battle if I don't do something. I see other posts here referring to waxing, should I do that or will I still risk having mold form under the wax? Then again maybe waxing cuts off air which prevents mold - I'm too new at this to know...

Photo below, the dark spots showing are some chopped rosemary I added before pressing.



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Offline Brie

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Re: What should I do with my 2 week old wheel of Havarti?
« Reply #1 on: April 07, 2010, 11:34:49 PM »
Havarti is quite prone to mold--I sometimes don't know what Ricki is talking about with her methods. I would suggest wiping off with salt and vinegar solution, let dry at room temp until cheese is dry, and then either wax or vacuum pack. I remember trying Ricki's same recipe and having the cheese dry out. Havarti's are a somewhat high-moisture cheese, so quick to ripen under proper conditions. I do believe there is hope here for yours! Good luck and keep us posted.
Darn, another cheese meltdown--ahh, perfect fondue.

Offline Alex

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Re: What should I do with my 2 week old wheel of Havarti?
« Reply #2 on: April 07, 2010, 11:57:31 PM »
I agree with Brie. Havarti is a cheese very similar to Gouda.  You are applying a natural rind treatment. It should be OK, but it seems that your humidity is too high. I always wax my Havarti's.
Alex-The Cheesepenter

Offline DeejayDebi

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Re: What should I do with my 2 week old wheel of Havarti?
« Reply #3 on: April 16, 2010, 08:43:45 PM »
Havarti definately need to be sealed in some fashion to maintain the moist springy texture. I vaccumm seal after about a week.