Author Topic: Waxing blue cheeses?  (Read 2693 times)

Offline Gina

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Waxing blue cheeses?
« on: June 23, 2010, 12:09:35 PM »
I've looked around for information on this but cant find much information besides some commercial blues that have been waxed and were for sale. I know waxing blue cheeses is not usually done, but I really enjoy waxing cheeses (go figure) and wonder at what stage in aging this would be best done, and what happens to the cheese.

I did notice in the blueberry Stilton thread here that Sailor mentioned his wife prefers a milder blue cheese and that he vacuum sealed a Stilton early to achieve that. Perhaps waxing would have the same affect. I also prefer milder cheeses and the rind is not my favorite part on blues.

The other day I did wax one of my 4 small roquefort types (with moderately good bluing) but am too impatient to wait to compare the waxed with the non-waxed. Any insight would be appreciated. :)
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Offline FRANCOIS

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Re: Waxing blue cheeses?
« Reply #1 on: June 23, 2010, 03:07:11 PM »
The short answer is yes.  You can wax them later in life as a final packaging or earlier to arrest blue growth, but ripening will still occur.  An odd thing I have noticed with them is that when the wheel is cut open it looks like there is no blue.  After 10 minutes of air contact the color will come back, you can actually watch sort of reappear.

Offline linuxboy

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Re: Waxing blue cheeses?
« Reply #2 on: June 23, 2010, 03:15:02 PM »
Francois, I notice the same thing if I am making curd crumbles and bag sealing them. They will ripen, but not turn blue until I actually open the bag 2-3 months later.
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Offline Sailor Con Queso

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Re: Waxing blue cheeses?
« Reply #3 on: June 23, 2010, 03:47:02 PM »
Interesting. Several people have commented that my Stilton's don't seem to have much veining inside, but the flavor is really intense. I would not WANT any more blue flavor. And I have noticed that the blue comes out as the cheese sits at room temp for a while.

Gina - I vac bag all of my Stiltons. It leaves a nice soft rind that's really tasty. A little liquid always accumulates in the bag from the mold dying off. If that happens with a waxed blue, you may lose the airtight seal.
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Offline linuxboy

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Re: Waxing blue cheeses?
« Reply #4 on: June 23, 2010, 05:11:56 PM »
I think what happens is that we are seeing the mold at work. The visible part of the mold are the extensions that sporulate. Underneath, it's a white or colorless fabric of mycelium. So you inoculate and the molds are evenly distributed, start forming the mycelium, but without oxygen they can't finish the cycle. It's kind of how mushrooms only grow when the temperature and humidity and season is just right. Underneath, the mycelium mat is alive, but you don't see it up above.
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Offline Gina

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Re: Waxing blue cheeses?
« Reply #5 on: June 24, 2010, 08:10:15 AM »
Thanks for the responses. :)

Quote from: SCQ
Gina - I vac bag all of my Stiltons. It leaves a nice soft rind that's really tasty. A little liquid always accumulates in the bag from the mold dying off. If that happens with a waxed blue, you may lose the airtight seal.

Thanks, I'll watch for that. The wax blend I am using is both flexible and sturdy so it might not be a problem.

 
Quote from: LB
So you inoculate and the molds are evenly distributed, start forming the mycelium, but without oxygen they can't finish the cycle.

So this is also why non-sealed blue cheeses need piercing - the fungal hyphae may be growing within the cheese already, but need oxygen for the more visible spores to develop inside?
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Offline linuxboy

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Re: Waxing blue cheeses?
« Reply #6 on: June 24, 2010, 09:38:24 AM »
Exactly right, Gina. Think of it like digging a small hole and having mushrooms grow on the side of the hole, whereas before they only grew up from the top of the soil. And the open curd structure helps the oxygen penetrate.
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Offline jwwbrennan

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Re: Waxing blue cheeses?
« Reply #7 on: February 20, 2013, 08:49:27 AM »
I vac bag all of my Stiltons. It leaves a nice soft rind that's really tasty. A little liquid always accumulates in the bag from the mold dying off. If that happens with a waxed blue, you may lose the airtight seal.

Would you please recommend a good vacuum sealer or the features one might have that would be desirable?

I wonder if some aren't so powerful they will compress or otherwise damage the cheese in the process.
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Offline Boofer

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Re: Waxing blue cheeses?
« Reply #8 on: February 20, 2013, 09:10:04 AM »
I vac bag all of my Stiltons. It leaves a nice soft rind that's really tasty. A little liquid always accumulates in the bag from the mold dying off. If that happens with a waxed blue, you may lose the airtight seal.


Would you please recommend a good vacuum sealer or the features one might have that would be desirable?

I wonder if some aren't so powerful they will compress or otherwise damage the cheese in the process.
I use a FoodSaver. It has a button to push to start and also stop the vacuum process. That's important because you don't want to squeeze the life out of a few foods (and cheeses), you just want to seal them. My Maasdam cheeses had holes that I wanted to preserve and stopping the vacuum at just the right point was critical to having a sealed and pristine Maasdam.

I vacuum-sealed my Fourme d'Ambert and it seemed to do just fine, as per Sailor's posting.

I wouldn't pick a vacuum sealer that does everything automatically for you. Sometimes it's good to be in control. ;)

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Offline jwwbrennan

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Re: Waxing blue cheeses?
« Reply #9 on: February 20, 2013, 11:48:45 AM »
I see a FoodSaver® V2490 with manual operation for $100C delivered. I'll order tomorrow if no one recommends it is inferior, inadequate or there is a more suitable unit.

I will wax the hard cheeses but wonder about when wrappers are recommended and if there are cheeses that should never be vacuum sealed.

Thanks

Jim
« Last Edit: February 20, 2013, 12:18:36 PM by jwwbrennan »
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Offline shotski

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Re: Waxing blue cheeses?
« Reply #10 on: February 20, 2013, 04:50:34 PM »
I picked up the Foodsaver 3800 series from COSCO and used it for the first time lastweekend and it has a delicate vacuum setting on it that may work. Here it is in action.

Foodsaver V3800 series - Sealing UMAi DrybagSteak (Homemade Pancetta)


and at the bottom of this link is what I did.

http://cheeseforum.org/forum/index.php/topic,11005.0.html
 

Offline jwwbrennan

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Re: Waxing blue cheeses?
« Reply #11 on: February 21, 2013, 03:43:56 AM »
Thanks shotski, I'll get a Foodsaver and wing it from there.

Your family event in the link had the appearance of a Shopsy's (Toronto) event but with artisan everything.
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Offline shotski

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Re: Waxing blue cheeses?
« Reply #12 on: February 21, 2013, 08:29:08 PM »
Thanks shotski, I'll get a Foodsaver and wing it from there.

Your family event in the link had the appearance of a Shopsy's (Toronto) event but with artisan everything.

Well we are 40k from toronto so it is on a smaller scale :D)

Offline shotski

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Re: Waxing blue cheeses?
« Reply #13 on: March 29, 2013, 01:11:41 PM »
Gina - I vac bag all of my Stiltons. It leaves a nice soft rind that's really tasty. A little liquid always accumulates in the bag from the mold dying off. If that happens with a waxed blue, you may lose the airtight seal.

A few questions about vac sealing your Stilton.

At what stage of aging do you usually vac seal your Stilton?

Do you cut into pieces or whole?

Do you store them in your cave, fridge or do you freeze them?

Thanks John



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Re: Waxing blue cheeses?
« Reply #14 on: March 29, 2013, 02:14:24 PM »
when I think my Stilton is ready (by way of taking a core sample and tasting) I will cut it in half, wrap with plastic wrap, bag one full half, then cut the second half in in two (1/4) wrap and bag half, cut the remaining piece to size I need, keep out what I plan on using right away.
I try to get as many pieces in one bag as I can, (wrapped individually in plastic wrap).
If I think it needs more sharpness I put it back in the cave and age it further if the flavor is what I want we put it in the regular fridge.
In fact this weekend we will be cutting up our latest Stilton at 8 weeks old ;D
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