Author Topic: Anyone have a recipe for making Oka cheese?  (Read 3139 times)

Offline leedsfan

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Anyone have a recipe for making Oka cheese?
« on: May 17, 2010, 01:34:46 PM »
It's a canadian cheese brought across from Europe by a trappist monk. Very tasty stuff and I'm looking to make my own version.


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Offline DeejayDebi

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Re: Anyone have a recipe for making Oka cheese?
« Reply #1 on: May 17, 2010, 10:34:49 PM »
Oka, a Port-du-Salut style cheese, is named after a village south-west of Montreal, on the north shore of the Lake of Two Mountains in Québec, Canada.

http://www.practicallyedible.com/edible.nsf/pages/okacheese

Linixboy has a recipe here on the forum somewhere.

Offline Alex

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Re: Anyone have a recipe for making Oka cheese?
« Reply #2 on: May 18, 2010, 01:44:52 AM »
I'd like to add some more info to Debi's:

It is a semi-firm cheese with a strong aroma made from either raw or pasteurized cow's milk. The rind can be anywhere from straw yellow to orangey-red. Inside, the cheese is a pale yellow. It comes in rounds that weight about 2.6 kg.

There are two versions: the regular is aged for 30 days, classic is aged for 60 days. Both are ripened on slats of Cypress from the Carolinas in America.

This Canadian version of Port-du-Salut style cheeses doesn't quite have the texture or the full flavor of the European originals, particularly now that it's being made by a conglomerate, but it's more affordable for Canadians owing to discriminatory measures levied against cheese competition from abroad.

History:

A monastery was established at Oka by the Trappists in 1881. Every Trappist Abbey had to be able to support itself: they didn't have to be self-sufficient, as in eating only what they produced. They could buy stuff from outside sources, but they had to earn the money to do so with.

Though a monk named Alphonse Juin (1842 to 1910) is credited with the "invention" of Oka cheese, he didn't really invent it: the Trappists sent the formula out to all their Abbeys to help them earn their living. Juin was trained in making Port du Salut cheese; he had been making the cheese at the Port du Salut Abbey in France for 19 years. He was sent first to an Abbey in the United States, Our Lady of Gesthemani in Kentucky, where he taught them how to make Trappist cheese, which they still do themselves right at the Abbey. Juin arrived at Oka to teach them as well in February 1893.

The monks made the cheese until about 1974. At that point, they licensed the name of the cheese and the rights to make it on their behalf to a company that is now called Agropur (now there's a reassuringly artisanal name for you). Even Agropur's "classic" version, aged for 60 days, is still not aged as long as the monks had aged it. The factory, though, was established next to the monastery so that the monks could still check in on their cheese.

 
 
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Offline leedsfan

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Re: Anyone have a recipe for making Oka cheese?
« Reply #3 on: May 18, 2010, 12:37:11 PM »
Thank you both for your insightful posting and help scouting for the recipe. I am really excited to try and make this cheese. I was thinking of doing a 5lb block.

I am going to combine a little of both recipes, which I will take pictures and posts results from in this thread.


Offline DeejayDebi

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Re: Anyone have a recipe for making Oka cheese?
« Reply #4 on: May 19, 2010, 10:02:28 PM »
Good luck and Keep us posted!


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Offline vavroom

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Re: Anyone have a recipe for making Oka cheese?
« Reply #5 on: May 22, 2010, 11:04:50 PM »
Hmmm, well, there's another cheese to put on my "to try" list :D I grew up in Québec and Oka was my grand-father's favourite cheese :)
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Offline leedsfan

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Re: Anyone have a recipe for making Oka cheese?
« Reply #6 on: June 03, 2010, 11:55:37 AM »
ok so I have just applied my first spray of b. linens. I plan on alternating days between wine wash and b. linens spray for the first few days, then only do wine wash after the first week. I amalgamated a recipe from linuxboy that was for a port-salut cheese with an old Trappist cheese recipe I found last year:

Premium Oka Cheese Recipe (includes optional Germanic wine wash)



This Oka recipe is a hybrid between an original Trappist recipe and a Port-Salut recipe (supplied by Linuxboy). Follow the flocculation multiplier and RH or the cheese will be dryer than expected.

I make a 16 litre (4 gallon) batch with ½ teaspoon of each culture and ½ teaspoon of liquid rennet but if you make half the amount (8 litre or 2 gallons), then use the same amounts of culture and rennet


1) Sterilize your containers and pots and all your equipment.
2) Warm raw milk to 96F (add CaC2 if not using milk from May-October)
4) Add Choozit TA 60 and Choozit Alp, equal parts according to manufacturer guidelines. Should be 85 DCU each for 17 l.
5) Ripen 30 mins.
6) Add rennet. Flocculation should happen at 20 mins. Use 3X multiplier. Cut to half inch size. Leave for 10 minutes.
7) Drain 30% of the whey after 30 minuts. Ph should be 6.4-6.45
Add hot (130-150F) water (10-15% volume, which in this case is about 2 liters). Raise total temp to around 100F in 12-20 mins.
9) Press under whey with 2x own weight (meaning, weight should be about 10 lbs for 17 l). Ph should be 5.4, then brine.
10) Brine shouldn't be fully saturated but around 18-20%. Brine for 3 hours per lb. The ph level after brine should be 5.2
11) Dry at 90% humidity at 60F for 24 hours.
12) Spray b linens on days 1, 3, 7, and 10. Age at 90% RH, 60F. Brush off rind flora after 2 weeks and wash to get a cleaner rind. Optional – use Riesling or Gewurztraminer as an added light wash every other day for first 3 weeks.
13) Ripen for a few days at 70% RH to dry the rind. If available vacuum seal and don't forget to label & date!
14) Age at 40-42F for 4 weeks.


Kudos to Linuxboy for his Port Salut recipe