Author Topic: HI there from Montana!  (Read 153 times)

Online mobius

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HI there from Montana!
« on: August 17, 2017, 04:19:01 PM »
Hi everyone, I have been assiduously reading posts while I wait for my ingredients to be delivered (rennet, measuring spoons, cultures, cheesecloth, CaCl,you name it!).

I have a lovely local dairy that I believe will be an excellent source of whole milk for cheesemaking. While the milk is not organic, it is non-homogenized, although pasturized and very in demand in my neck of the woods. 

I have for years made yogurt with this milk and keep frozen yogurt from icecube tray in the freezer so I am never out of culture. I have, once only, made the following: mozzarella (quick), ricotta (from that whey) and gje tost (from the left over whey of the ricotta). Nothing wasted there. The mozz was sub par for sure but I used junket rennet not knowing better.

I have six chickens, organically raised and healthy, and I sell the eggs...a tiny organic veggie garden for my own purposes ( love canning and making salsa and ratatouille). I hav fermented pickles and sauerkraut. So I do have a plethora of kitchen implements. I also raise and harvest herbs and make my own healing balms and tinctures and liniments.

So! What are we leaving out here? CHEESE!

I expect to start on the first cheeses, going through the easy ones, the soft ones, the non-aged ones first...one at a time. Ca't wait for the feta and mozz.

If all goes well I have later plans for a dutch press and a cheese cave (already have the mini-fridge doing nothing in my basement).


I do have a question tho..many of these soft cheese recipes call for vinegar. Which is the best? I have Bragg's ACV, I make my own ACV from that, and i have white which I use in a lot of cleaning recipes.

Any input would be most appreciated. Happy to be here!
So many cheeses, so little time!

Offline Rain Frances

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Re: HI there from Montana!
« Reply #1 on: August 18, 2017, 10:29:01 AM »
Hi Mobius :)
I can't answer your question, but just wanted to say hi, I'm new on the forum too and am having a heck of a time with Mozzarella, though I've managed 3 Cheddars and a Dry Jack already! How nice to have a local dairy for raw milk I assume? I'm moving towards a small hobby farm myself in the next 5 years or so. Nice to have your own eggs too! :)

Rain

Online mobius

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Re: HI there from Montana!
« Reply #2 on: August 18, 2017, 10:55:16 AM »
hi Rain Frances, nice to hear from you....what kind of mozz are you making?

The milk I get is not raw (I wish) from the dairy, it is pasteurized, but not homogenized. And the milk itself tastes SO much better than any other milk I could buy at the store! It is fantastic. And the dairy is just a few miles away...they produce butter and half and half and heavy cream as well!

Oh and if you get a hobby farm, you will LOVE the chickens. Ask me anything!
« Last Edit: August 18, 2017, 11:41:56 AM by mobius »
So many cheeses, so little time!

Offline Rain Frances

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Re: HI there from Montana!
« Reply #3 on: August 18, 2017, 04:29:22 PM »
I've had great success using the 30-minute Mozza. But I'm on attempt #4 for the traditional recipe. I'm having a terrible time with the stretching, which I've learned likely has everything to do with acidity. I'm trying different things, different recipes and different additives, but zilch. My next purchase will have to be a PH meter I think. Everyone says that Mozza is one of the toughest cheeses to make and I'm understanding why!

My milk is from the grocery store, pasteurized and homogenized...with all of my other cheeses, calcium chloride helped with that. Time will tell with this Mozza! It's been ripening nearly 3 hours now and I read on curd-nerd.com that she ripens hers up to 48 hours...I'm desperate at this point lol...so I'm going to let it sit 24 hours and test it tomorrow!

Online mobius

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Re: HI there from Montana!
« Reply #4 on: August 18, 2017, 04:46:22 PM »
So sorry to hear you are having so much trouble! I wish you all the best with the artisan mozz...that is what I want to make too...let us know how this batch turns out....youtube has been educating me...and i plan to use CaCl also...regardless....

pH strips might help in a pinch before you invest...i have a long spool of that and it seems fairly accurate...


When good cheese goes bad!  ;D >:D :'(
So many cheeses, so little time!

Offline Rain Frances

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Re: HI there from Montana!
« Reply #5 on: August 18, 2017, 05:15:55 PM »
Oh my gosh, attempt #4 failed...but...I have one more trick up my sleeve. I'm going to let the curd sit for 24-48 hours on the counter at room temperature. I read about this method that is....wait for it...."FULL PROOF"...I must laugh at that word ha ha. I have nothing to lose. I do have some PH strips, but they aren't working too well, so it'll be a PH meter for me very soon before I waste any more milk!

I hope you have better luck than me!

Offline Gregore

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Re: HI there from Montana!
« Reply #6 on: August 18, 2017, 07:41:24 PM »
With mozza you will have a ph window from 5.4 or so to maybe 4.8 / 4.9 at the very lowest  that will be milk dependent , I think buffalo milk stretches at a lower ph than cows milk  so cows milk I would try to work it at above 5  .

 So if you can get ph strips that will read 5.4 or even a little above it will let you know when to start testing it . 

Every 30 minutes or so at 70 degrees you should put a small piece of curd into 180 degree water and let it sit ,  then take it out then see if it pulls a little , but be carful it takes a soft touch . 

There are a bunch of videos on line that show the technique of stretching .


Offline Rain Frances

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Re: HI there from Montana!
« Reply #7 on: Yesterday at 08:20:54 AM »
Thanks Gregore :)

Online mobius

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Re: HI there from Montana!
« Reply #8 on: Yesterday at 03:22:49 PM »
I think great advice from Gregore as well! Following closely, please do tell what you discover, Rain, with your Full Proof method! And best of luck, fingers crossed for you! :) :) :)

Wonder if it could be the culture? What culture exactly are you using (this of course from a cheese ignoramus, but researching cultures)? You are using CaCl, right, culture and what kind of rennet?

Shouldn't be this hard!
So many cheeses, so little time!

Offline Duntov

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Re: HI there from Montana!
« Reply #9 on: Yesterday at 05:30:29 PM »
Welcome to the forum!
The Rinds, they are a changin. 
- John

Offline AnnDee

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Re: HI there from Montana!
« Reply #10 on: Yesterday at 08:14:06 PM »
Hi Mobius,
It seems like you almost have everything you need for your kitchen! Wow, I am so envious here that you have your own organic garden, my herb garden keeps dying on me (too much sun here for some delicate herbs I think).
Anyway, welcome again to the forum :)
When you say soft cheese, do you mean ricotta and mascarpone type (direct acid cheeses)?
I used to use acv for my direct acid cheeses but it left distinct smell on the cheese, now I use citric acid to make my ricotta and mascarpone, no smell.
Of course there are other soft cheese that does not need direct acid, how about making some renneted soft cheeses? I enjoy making bloomy rind soft cheese most of all.
Ann