Author Topic: Culture Questions For Parmesan  (Read 1545 times)

Offline Sing_cheese

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Culture Questions For Parmesan
« on: December 29, 2008, 12:15:42 AM »
Been lurking on this board for a few months as I have started to make cheese. Finally got around to documenting one of our cheese adventures from cow to brine.  This was the first really large batch we have made (50 liters) and seems to have worked out well with the exception of the cheese cloth sticking to the bottom rim of the cheese it seems OK.

here is the link:

http://sites.google.com/site/urbanfarmsteadcheeselog/parmesan-2-281208

One question as well.  I have been searching all over for more information on which cultures have what end cheese properties.  I have little information on what flavors or characteristics different cultures (e.g., Ma 101, Ma4001, Ma62 etc.) have.  I can go to Danlac and understand the different make up of the cultures (what are the ripening agents and percentages) but this does not give me direct info on which culture makes a better chedder/swiss/other cheese and why.  I undersand that much of this info can be gleaned from trial and error, but with ripening times of many months, I dont want to wait that long. would love to experiment with a little sense of direction.  Has anyone seen this type of info anywhere on the web (New England Cheesemaking supply has some but not much)?

As per the link, I am starting to document and publish on the web some of what we are doing (I have seen another cheesemaker doing the same on another forum (the cheese hole)).  Would love more info or pointers on cultures to try
Gerrit @ Urban Farmstead Singapore

http://sites.google.com/site/urbanfarmst


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Offline Cartierusm

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Re: Culture Questions For Parmesan
« Reply #1 on: December 29, 2008, 02:05:58 AM »
You know most of what you see on Danlac is not really different cultures. There are really just a few basic cultures. Alot of the different looking cutlures are just combinations of other cutlures. For example a basic Meso is MA11, well MA11 is used with MD89 for brie and blue, well they make another culture with both in it and call it something different, but it's the same as the two stand alone cultures. The times you are talking about, "you don't want to wait that long" are referring to the ripening times during the first stage of making cheese, not the aging time. And some are just called different but the same culture but made for use as a starter cultures to make a mother culture. And some are just Meso and Thero batches together. So the variance in cheese making is the actual process and some special cultures and natural flavoring such as Lypase.

I would stick with the basic stuff until you have a good feeling for what the cheese is going to taste as at the end of the aging period. I believe if you keep messing around with too many variables in the beginning you will never have a grasp at what can and does go wrong, how to correct it and what cosistency tastes like.
Life is like a box of chocolates sometimes too much rennet makes you kill people.

Offline Cartierusm

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Re: Culture Questions For Parmesan
« Reply #2 on: December 29, 2008, 02:12:37 AM »
Just checked out you webpage..looking good, nice job. Your first pressing made your cheese look like dough. Came out nice in the end. Very nice that you can get milk straight from the farm. Where are you located?

Keep the weblog going we love pictures, your curds at the time of draining the whey look excellent.
Life is like a box of chocolates sometimes too much rennet makes you kill people.

Offline Sing_cheese

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Re: Culture Questions For Parmesan
« Reply #3 on: December 29, 2008, 06:31:53 AM »
Thanks for the reply.

We are located in Singapore and did not think there was any raw milk here at all (have been here 20 years and never heard of a dairy farm).  I was wrong. Found a lone Indian Dairy farmer with about 35 milking cows that supply the local Indian resturaunts with raw milk to make Paneer. Have yet to meet any other Cheesemakers in South East Asia.

We have been at it for a few months and have done about 20 batches.  Most are still in the cave. Hence, my question about the variance in the cultures was really referring to how do learn more about the subtlies of the culture. Your answer is most of waht I expected in that the cheese is made by the process more than the starter.  Was just wondering if for example M4001 was better for a certain cheese than MA101 or others.

Will post pics as I have now started to document on the web and not just in a notebook.

Just cut open a Provolone from late November.  Is really good and surprisingly strong.

Gerrit @ Urban Farmstead Singapore

http://sites.google.com/site/urbanfarmst

Offline John (CH)

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Re: Culture Questions For Parmesan
« Reply #4 on: December 29, 2008, 07:00:00 AM »
Gerit & Asya

I also researched manufactured cultures and built a Culture Manufacturers Webpage and a Manufactured Cultures Webapage. Beyond that I have not investigated that far. Frankly like Cartier says, it's a bit of a closed shop, as even when you go to the manufacturer's page like Danisco, they still don't divulge lots of detail.

Dairy Connection has some info on which ones for which cheeses.

Cheers, John.


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Offline John (CH)

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Re: Culture Questions For Parmesan
« Reply #5 on: December 29, 2008, 07:55:02 AM »
Some more detailed and technical info has just appeared, may be of use.

Offline Cartierusm

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Re: Culture Questions For Parmesan
« Reply #6 on: December 29, 2008, 10:09:25 AM »
Those two are ones I was referring to. The MA4000-4001 is a blend of Meso and Thermo Cultures for faster acid development.

The MM100-101 is a blend of MA11 and MD88-89 to make Brie, Blue and others, they just combine it so a cheese making professional doesn't have to mess with measurments.
Life is like a box of chocolates sometimes too much rennet makes you kill people.

Offline Tea

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Re: Culture Questions For Parmesan
« Reply #7 on: December 29, 2008, 02:10:56 PM »
Picking up on the provolone thought, I too was amazed at the strong flavour, but in the end I couldn't keep my hands off it.  It ranks up there as one of my favourite.  It was completely different to the store bought stuff that I had tried.
Love the pic of your too, and it looks the same as mine did, with a beautiful smooth interior and hard chewy exterior rind.