Author Topic: Making Mother Cultures - A Photo Essay  (Read 19643 times)

Offline Trey Magnus

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Re: Making Mother Cultures - A Photo Essay
« Reply #45 on: August 04, 2011, 05:27:41 PM »
Outstanding, thanks for the quick response.


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Offline Sailor Con Queso

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Re: Making Mother Cultures - A Photo Essay
« Reply #46 on: August 05, 2011, 12:15:09 PM »
It's actually fairly common in commercial rotations to culture at lower temps and cycle through every 24 hours. That way the next day, the culture is just right and not overacidified.

I find that the thermos "kick" way too fast when I incubate at 110F. So does my yogurt. 6 or 7 hours is usually more than enough if you incubate thermos (or yogurt) at 110F. So as LB suggests, I lower my incubation temp to 100F and they can go overnight. I do Mother Cultures at the end of my day and the Thermos are good to go the next morning. Mesos at room temp will usually take a few hours longer. If you start getting much visible whey at the top of your container, you have gone too long. It's much better to under incubate than risk over acidification. In your routine, just be consistent in the way you do things.
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Offline Trey Magnus

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Re: Making Mother Cultures - A Photo Essay
« Reply #47 on: August 05, 2011, 01:50:56 PM »
Well your post makes me feel a bit better Sailor.  Yesterday evening I made a 1/2 gallon of TA61 and 1/2 gallon of LH100.  Stuck them in my oven with just the light on (it maintains 100F very tightly) and this morning when I got up I decided to check on them.  It had only been 11 hours (I was expecting 24+) but I decided I would give them a check anyway.  The LH100 was like a thick pancake batter.  Very consistent with no lumps and was at a pH of 4.11.  Perfect.  I quickly put it into ice trays and got it to the freezer.  I was a little confused as how it was ready so fast but very pleased with it.

Then I checked the TA61.  Upon initial visual inspection, it was not as thick so I thought it might need some more time, but when I checked the pH,  unfortunately it was already down to 3.75.  I went ahead and put it into ice trays and into the freezer also but feel uneasy about trying to use it.  I guess I will just toss it when I get home tonight (wonder if it will hurt to feed it to the chickens?) and make another batch of TA61 right before I go to bed tonight and start checking it at 7 hours when I get up in the morning.

Any explanation as to why the TA61 was thinner but already down to a lower pH?

As with everything , this is a learning experience and I am excited about perfecting the processes and using the MC's.

Thanks again for this thread and all the comments.

Offline Sailor Con Queso

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Re: Making Mother Cultures - A Photo Essay
« Reply #48 on: August 05, 2011, 04:17:37 PM »
Think of the "TA" as "Thermo Acidifier". I don't know if that is the company's logic, but it is certainly mine and helps me keep from confusing thermo cultures. I think the same way with Meso - "MA" = "Meso Acidifier".

So the "TA's" mission is to gobble lactose and acidify quickly, but it does not do a very good job of utilizing all the lactose. That's where the LH steps in. The LH100 does not metabolize lactose as quickly, however it finishes up where the TA stops. Once the TA hits a certain point in the time curve, the pH drops like a rock. This is one of the reasons that thermo cheeses often stick to cheesecloth and everything else. So that's exactly what you are seeing with the Mother Cultures. The TA acidifies quicker, so it doesn't need to incubate as long. Like I said previously - usually 6 to 7 hours. Another way to manage things is to use less dry culture to prime the milk. Cut the bacteria in half and it will take longer. Bacteria grow logarithmically so it will NOT take twice as long.

From a practical standpoint, your TA has over acidified and will not be as robust as it should be. Many bacteria are still alive and viable, but some will not survive the acidic conditions. You can either use a little more or give it more time to ripen. In any case, use it soon, and don't expect it to last too long, even if frozen. Keep in mind that when using a Mother Culture you are not only adding the bacteria, but you are adding the acid that was produced as well. So you don't want to add too much MC either or your acidity will be lower than it should be at rennet time. Milk for MC is cheap, so personally I would make some fresh.
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Offline fied

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Re: Making Mother Cultures - A Photo Essay
« Reply #49 on: September 03, 2011, 09:39:13 AM »
A really excellent discussion and far removed from my do-it-by-eye/tradition knowledge.

As a child, I saw how cultures were made by adding the previous day's culture to new milk in quantities enough to fit the current batch of milk; cheese was made every other day. Some of those cultures must have had their origin decades before I was born. I grew up making them this way and didn't know until teenage years that they were they equivalents of yoghurt, sour cream and creme fraiche; they were all just called clabber, a couple for warm milk and one for what was called "hot milk." I don't bother to make them now, but use very good locally made live creme fraiche and yoghurt instead.

I suppose there are two points worth considering about the traditional methods. One is that farmers' wives had a good, if unarticulated knowledge of cheese making, as my family did. The other is that some of the old bacteriological strains cultivated on individual farms must have died out with the increasing industrialisation of cheese making.


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Offline Queixo

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Re: Making Mother Cultures - A Photo Essay
« Reply #50 on: September 10, 2011, 05:14:45 AM »
I've got my first true starter (MA400) now, but given the price I paid for it, the first thing I did was to search for a thread like this.
Thank you Sailor for bringing it up   :)
I've got a new and more reliable pH meter too, so I HAD to do something with my new toys. Inoculated 200 gr of UHT milk with a really tiny amount of MA400. I have a digital scale with an accuracy of 0.01gr which was unable to weigh the starter, so maybe it was around 5 mg. Managed to keep the milk's temperature at 32ºC for 20-something hours and plotted the data. I'm not sure if this is of any use for someone. Here it is, anyway:

Offline george13

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Re: Making Mother Cultures - A Photo Essay
« Reply #51 on: September 10, 2011, 05:36:49 AM »
Sailor, or whoever may know, if you don'tmind, a slight deviation in cultures but not in topic.  Although P. Roqueforti is a fungus rather than bacteria, is there a way to incubate a similar culture/colony of fungii for later use.  It seems the price of the powder has gone considerably up as of late.  Any ideas? I often thought of scraping some from my blues and saving, but was not sure what else was coming with it.
Thanks

Offline linuxboy

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Re: Making Mother Cultures - A Photo Essay
« Reply #52 on: September 10, 2011, 06:39:32 AM »
Here you go, attached. Old school bread style approach from Hussong and Hammer from Iowa that you can do at home. You can improve on the old method by using modern lab approaches to purify the conidia, such as pureeing the media after fermentation, filtering out the solids, and centrifuging a few times to collect the pure conidia layer that you can then pelletize or freeze outright.

This also works well for aspergillus, for anyone who wants to propagate koji. Make sure your bread has no preservatives.

edit: also see http://cheeseforum.org/forum/index.php?topic=2273.0 I posted this answer before, the link in that thread is to the paper I attached. Apparently, the link system changed so the old link doesn't work. Just as well, we should have the PDF here for reference, anyway.

Queixo, mate, thanks for being so excited about making an acidification curve chart. Sometimes, I wonder if I'm the only one :) Cheese to you :)
« Last Edit: September 10, 2011, 07:09:58 AM by linuxboy »
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Offline george13

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Re: Making Mother Cultures - A Photo Essay
« Reply #53 on: September 10, 2011, 07:50:10 AM »
Great stuff, thanks.

Offline Tomer1

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Re: Making Mother Cultures - A Photo Essay
« Reply #54 on: September 10, 2011, 09:41:07 AM »
I tried the french method using sourdough WW which I intenionally over-acidified to ensure safer enviroment.
I got some cat's hair and white mold in some places but inside where I made the slit, the bread was all blue (green).
I tried making cambazola from it without much success,had some yeast contamination (not sure if its because of the dried culture because I also used a piece of older cam instead of pure PC powder.
Im not sure I want to ruin 10-20 liters of milk just to save few bucks when Its safer to reuse an older piece of my blue cheese.
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Offline Delislem

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Re: Making Mother Cultures - A Photo Essay
« Reply #55 on: September 13, 2011, 08:01:41 PM »
OK, let's see if I got this right.

- I make 1 liter of MC as per Sailor explanation
- I use some for my cheese the next day
- I freeze the rest, let's say, in 10ml cubes
- When I start my cheese I use one of those cubes per liter for 1% or two for 2%

Would that be a good way to do that?

Offline linuxboy

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Re: Making Mother Cultures - A Photo Essay
« Reply #56 on: September 13, 2011, 08:06:35 PM »
How much milk are you using. It is 1% by weight of the amount of milk.
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Offline Delislem

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Re: Making Mother Cultures - A Photo Essay
« Reply #57 on: September 13, 2011, 08:17:52 PM »
I'm going by Sailor's table. 8 liters of milk at 1% would require 80ml of MC. I'm trying to figure out if my "system" of freezing in 10ml cubes is a good approach to keeping and using my MC as I'm not making cheese on any kind of scale...yet  ;) ...that would require 1 liter of MC in the span of time it can be used fresh.


Offline linuxboy

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Re: Making Mother Cultures - A Photo Essay
« Reply #58 on: September 13, 2011, 08:58:31 PM »
Oh, sure. So long as you add the right weight of bulk culture per weight of milk, you can freeze however you want.
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Offline Mix spanish cheese

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Re: Making Mother Cultures - A Photo Essay
« Reply #59 on: November 09, 2011, 12:43:01 PM »
if u don´t have ph metre , and only ph liquid , how u know u got it , can i do onother test for know if it´s ok  MC ready?