Author Topic: John's Cheese #028 - Feta #2  (Read 2565 times)

Offline John (CH)

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John's Cheese #028 - Feta #2
« on: January 01, 2009, 02:38:57 PM »
Today I start my second Feta making based loosly on Tea's Feta Recipe, my previous Feta records here.

MAKING
  • Jan 1, 2009, 2:00PM: Poured 1 US gallon/3.8 litres of store bought pasteurized homogenized whole cow's milk from fridge into stockpot on smallest gas burner ring on stove. As milk pasteurized, to standardize, trickled and whisked in 1/2 teaspoon diluted CaCl2. Placed ~1/8 teaspoon Danisco's Choozit Brand Mesophilic Starter Culture MM100 onto new mini digital scale, measured at ~0.25 grams, tapped off onto top of milk, whisked in. Placed ~1/8 teaspoon Danisco's Brand Mild Calf Lipase onto new mini digital scale, measured at ~0.25 grams, tapped off onto top of milk, whisked in.
  • Jan 1, 2009, 2:10PM: Turned gas on low to warm milk to 87 F/31 C, turned off gas, measured pH at 5.8, covered and set aside for culture to grow.
  • Jan 1, 2009, 3:10PM: Measured pH at 5.80, re-warmed to 87 F/31 C. Placed ~1/16 teaspoon CHR Hansen Powdered Rennet mini digital scale, measured at ~0.25 grams, tapped off into 1/4 cup water, stirred to dilute, trickled onto milk while whisking in thoroughly. Covered and set aside for curd to set.
  • Jan 1, 2009, 4:10PM: Checked temp, warmed with gas for 10 seconds, checked for clean break, perfect, cut curds, covered and put aside for whey to start being expelled.
  • Jan 1, 2009, 5:10PM: Checked temp, warmed with gas for 10 seconds, checked pH of whey, 5.8, stirred curds.
  • Jan 1, 2009, 5:40PM: Curds sunk to bottom, poured off whey, ladled curds into Camembert hoops on mats on draining board.
  • Jan 1, 2009, 7:00PM: Placed mats on top of hoops and turned.
  • Jan 1, 2009, 9:00PM: Placed mats on top of hoops, turned, and left out on drain board bedside sink overnight.
  • Jan 2, 2009, 7:00AM: Removed Feta from hoops and placed on mats in fridge to cool/firm and dry.
  • Jan 2, 2009, 12:10PM: Cut one Feta into 1 cm / 1/2" cubes and placed into saturated brine bath for 8 minutes, removed and drained, repeated with second casting. Placed 2/3 of cubes in bottom of 2 US quart/2 liter container, poured store bought Garlic Olives in little oil and brine over top, stirred gently to enable cubes and olive to fill in holes and submerge, placed in fridge. Placed other 1/3 cubes separate for those in family that don't like olives.

NOTES
  • Fully whisking in CaCl2 and diluted rennet, really helps get good curd and clean break.
  • Taste was way better than last batch made, when using cow's milk to make feta, you have to have lipase!
  • Next time try 6 minutes brining in saturated brine for this size cubes.
« Last Edit: January 09, 2009, 05:50:35 PM by Cheese Head »


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Offline John (CH)

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John's Cheese #028 - Feta #2
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2009, 02:39:09 PM »
Second set of pictures . . .
« Last Edit: January 02, 2009, 01:50:09 PM by Cheese Head »

Offline John (CH)

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Re: John's Cheese #028 - Feta #2
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2009, 03:32:37 PM »
Tea (the Feta Pro)

OK, so I've said I would try making Feta again for so long and finally, mostly your recipe, except I've just added 1 hour between adding CaCl2, Meso Culture and Lipase and adding rennet as most other recipes have that step. I'm going to use my camembert hoops, my concern is not over brining it (like last time) and then I want to store in olive oil and olives as I have a nice jar that's been hiding in the back of th fridge (1.5 years out of date but should be OK ::)) that I want to use. I remember you posted about that and I searched but I couldn't find that post. I'm thinking ensure I have dry-hard enough feta to be cut up into small 1 cm / 1/2 in cubes, otherwise gaps between feta would be too big.

Any advice appreciated . . .

Offline Cartierusm

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Re: John's Cheese #028 - Feta #2
« Reply #3 on: January 01, 2009, 04:37:33 PM »
Those olives look sooooo good right now, mainly because I was just tasting some Habanero Tabasco and I had a few spoonfuls and it's freakin' hot. Now I'm hungry.
Life is like a box of chocolates sometimes too much rennet makes you kill people.

Offline Tea

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Re: John's Cheese #028 - Feta #2
« Reply #4 on: January 01, 2009, 04:40:14 PM »
I store my fetta in the brine in the big blocks.  That way it can be kept for 6-12mths.  To be marinated in the oil and olive, I then cut into cubes, and immerse in the oil.  I find they can be kept for upto a month this way.

Hope this answers your questions.
I'm not sure I deserve the fetta pro tag either, just that I probably make this more than enything else.

Can't wait to see the final product.  Good luck.


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Offline John (CH)

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Re: John's Cheese #028 - Feta #2
« Reply #5 on: January 02, 2009, 01:53:00 PM »
Yeah me, Feta worked out great, still need to get amount of brining down more accurate. Tasted a couple of cubes, very nice, lipase definitely required for when using cow's milk to make feta. Little too salty on outside edge of cube, not so in middle, should meld with a little time in fridge.

Olives turned out to have 1 cm / 0.5 inch layer of olive oil on top and rest was brine, rather than all oil, should still work out fine.

Offline Tea

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Re: John's Cheese #028 - Feta #2
« Reply #6 on: January 03, 2009, 02:50:26 PM »
CH, you didn't state how long you had the fetta brining for?  I usually leave the cheese in the brine at least for a few days, before cutting and marinating.  Brine percentage is usually between 12-15%.  I prefer 12%.  If it is too salty when finished, soak the cheese in milk for upto an hour before use.
BTW the fetta looks great.  So pleased that you finally got this cheese made.  So what do you think of the final product.  Is it something that you would make again?

Offline John (CH)

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Re: John's Cheese #028 - Feta #2
« Reply #7 on: January 03, 2009, 04:15:22 PM »
Thanks Tea, yes I would definately make again!

On salting, soaked the cubes, not blocks for 8 minutes only in saturated brine, not 12% brine. The cubes are small so don't take long to soak up the salt, we tasted straight away and very salty on outside not much in middle of cubes. I just tasted the non-olived cubed ones not in brine in plastic box and they are perfect on salt, but a little moist-creamy (just the way you like them), not crumbly. To get that I assume they need to be dryer which means longer cooking time next batch?

Offline Tea

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Re: John's Cheese #028 - Feta #2
« Reply #8 on: January 03, 2009, 05:35:23 PM »
No, you can make the curd harder by just stiring more during the two hour stage.  I only stir twice, but if you stir every 1/2 hour or so, this helps to break up the curd a bit more which also means more whey is expelled during this process.
Glad you like the fetta and would make it again.  I find this cheese so versatile and useful in so many dishes.  We just finished off the last lot, so I need to make this again.  The kids requested pumpkin puffs for new years eve.

Offline Julz

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Re: John's Cheese #028 - Feta #2
« Reply #9 on: January 07, 2009, 02:31:35 AM »
 :P   That looks divine!  The info about the stirring of curds was helpful too. My friend told me my feta was not crumbly enough  and that it wasn't like how they make it when she went to Greece.  I'm glad a Fetta Master likes it softer, too.


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Offline Cartierusm

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Re: John's Cheese #028 - Feta #2
« Reply #10 on: January 08, 2009, 01:45:24 AM »
John, you're curds look great, I can't believe how firm they are for store bought milk. Any secrets?
Life is like a box of chocolates sometimes too much rennet makes you kill people.

Offline John (CH)

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Re: John's Cheese #028 - Feta #2
« Reply #11 on: January 08, 2009, 06:01:30 AM »
Thanks, yep great curd sets last two cheese makings, previous batch the curd set almost too much as whey already being heavily expelled before I cut the curd. Three possibilities:
  • Higher amount than required of CaCl2?
  • Very thorough distribution of CaCl2 via whisking it in?
  • Very thorough distribution of rennet via 1st diluting in water and then dribbling in while heavy whisking?

Currently I tend to believe #3 is the cause, will reduce CaCl2 to recommended normal amount on next batch, this weekend.

Offline DeejayDebi

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Re: John's Cheese #028 - Feta #2
« Reply #12 on: March 24, 2009, 10:36:47 PM »
Oh Giovani that looks absolutely delicious! And with my favorite olives too!

yummmmmm!