Author Topic: Coagulation, Rennet, Vegetarian - Poor Curd Set  (Read 2720 times)

Offline judyp

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Coagulation, Rennet, Vegetarian - Poor Curd Set
« on: August 15, 2011, 02:41:01 PM »
Hello again:
I am still having trouble getting my curd to a "clean break".  I've read about flocculation and tried this, but my curd is still low volume, lumpy and more like riccotta.  My 30-minute mozzarrella use to always turn out.  It no longer turns out.  I am using new rennet (double strength vegetarian from cheesemaking.com)  I'm using Ricki Carols recipe...still my cheese won't form a clean break curd.  The curd sinks to the bottom of the pan.

I ran across another link in this forum when reading about rennet, and found this information
INOCULATE THE MILK:  The evening before you plan to make cheese, warm 1 gallon of the freshest milk to 20oC (68 o F) in the sterilized pot. Thoroughly blend in the inoculum of  2-3 tsp buttermilk or 1/3rd cup yogurt as starter . Cover the inoculated milk with the sterilized lid. (The function of this inoculation with bacterial starter is to have the milk fermenting bacteria make lactic acid which lowers the pH so that the rennet will be able to act on the casein.)
INCUBATE OVER NIGHT:   Let sit at room temperature (R.T.) overnight (20-22oC).
WARM THE MILK:  The next morning, warm milk up to 30 oC (take care not to burn it). Meanwhile, dissolve ¼ tablet of Rennet in ¼ cup cold water .  (This pictures shows a whole tablet being added to water).
ADD THE RENNET:   Add dissolved rennet to the warmed milk , stir to mix thoroughly. Cover, let sit undisturbed for approximately an hour.  Be patient.  Do not disturb the milk until it has coagulated.

I'm wondering if my milk is not the correct ph to be adding rennet (for what ever reason!).  Does anyone else inoculate their milk the night before?  That's not at all what Ricki's recipes say. 

I'm in need of suggestions/help.  My hard cheeses which I never had trouble with, are not setting up with a clean break like they use to.  I do have different goats and their milk must be very different.  It's fresh milk from our farm. 

Thanks,
Judy


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Offline mtncheesemaker(Pam)

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Re: Coagulation, Rennet, Vegetarian - Poor Curd Set
« Reply #1 on: August 15, 2011, 04:14:10 PM »
What starter are you using? Have you tried using calcium chloride to help give you a firmer curd?
You shouldn't have to inoculate the milk the night before. The recipes should each state the ripening time required.
Somewhere on the forum someone (LB?) gave a method for testing your rennet with a cup of milk. I can't remember exactly what he said to do, but maybe you can find that thread.
I would try using some CaCl2 if you aren't; it can help a lot, esp with some goat's milk.
Good luck,
Pam

Offline Gürkan Yeniçeri

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Re: Coagulation, Rennet, Vegetarian - Poor Curd Set
« Reply #2 on: August 15, 2011, 04:52:50 PM »
Hi Judyp, if your starter and rennet are fresh the only problem left is the milk. I sometimes see problems with storebought milk. If I am measuring correctly the pH is usually 7 with supermarket milk and I have to wait longer after adding the DVI starter to pull the pH down to 6.45.

With 30m mozz, you should be using citric acid not starter and after adding the rennet it may turn to yogurt like consistency with little grains of curds floating. That means too much citric acid. But it usually turns out a good stretch after microwaving.

Offline judyp

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Re: Coagulation, Rennet, Vegetarian - Poor Curd Set
« Reply #3 on: August 15, 2011, 07:15:15 PM »
The rennet test can be found on cheesemaking.com
6. How do I test my rennet to see if it has expired?

This is how we test our rennet: Heat one cup of milk to 90F. (Do not add citric acid.) Dissolve 1/4 rennet tablet (or 1/4 tsp. liquid rennet) in 8 oz of cool water and stir well. From this diluted rennet take 2 tablespoons and add it to the milk at 90F. Stir gently from the bottom to the top for 30 seconds.

If the rennet is working, the milk surface will begin to firm or form a slight film after two minutes. After six minutes, it will have formed a curd that will hold a knife cut.
I'll test it, but I just purchased it from Cheesemaking.com

Regarding the mozzarrella, I did add Citric Acid.  Normally this recipe turns out good, but my yield is low and yesterday, the curd was not stretchable.  It was like a soft cheese.    You are correct, I did not use a starter. 

Offline John (CH)

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Re: Coagulation, Rennet, Vegetarian - Poor Curd Set
« Reply #4 on: August 16, 2011, 05:15:21 AM »
judyp

Rereading your posts, you've made hard cheeses before and have gotten a good rennet coagulum, but not now after you changed your goat type. You said
Quote
I do have different goats and their milk must be very different.  It's fresh milk from our farm.
So I also assume you are using the goat milk in raw format, not pasteurized, and you haven't changed feed or antibiotics.

Here's a thread on same problem after Changing Cow Type, and another after Changing Cow Type. Here's a thread on Seasonal Adjustments when using cow milk. Just in case you changed from raw to pasteurized, here's a thread on that for Goat Milk.

Hope these help, but the general solution is to adjust your rennet amount to your new milk source based on Rennet Flocculation Test, if your time is too slow/fast for the cheese you are making then adjust the amount of rennet up/down.


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Offline MrsKK

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Re: Coagulation, Rennet, Vegetarian - Poor Curd Set
« Reply #5 on: August 16, 2011, 09:00:28 PM »
You say this is new rennet.  Were you using vegetarian rennet before or calf rennet?  I have used veggie rennet and have had variable results with it.

I hope you get it figured out soon.

Offline newcheemomma

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Re: Coagulation, Rennet, Vegetarian - Poor Curd Set
« Reply #6 on: August 17, 2011, 02:40:31 AM »
Hi Judy. Just to add my two cents here, I have never had very consistent results with vegetable rennet. Even when Ive used CaCl, the result was alway a rather soft coagulum. What type of rennet were you using before, when your cheeses were setting up as expected? Maybe going back to the other type of rennet and using CaCl will help. Keep us posted
Mauricia

Offline judyp

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Re: Coagulation, Rennet, Vegetarian - Poor Curd Set
« Reply #7 on: August 17, 2011, 10:55:11 AM »
This is new rennet and it is vegetarian!  I've used the vegetarian for my soft cheeses but usually used animal for the hard cheeses.  I didn't have any specific reason for doing this.  When I needed rennet, the animal rennet was back-ordered so I bought an extra large bottle of vegetable rennet.   Does the table have better consistency

The vegetable rennet is double-strength.  I've been told to not use it as double-strength and just add the amount the recipe calls for.  What do you all think of this?  If the recipe calls for 1tsp. instead of using 1/2 tsp. double-strength, use 1 tsp.?

Thanks,
Judy


Offline linuxboy

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Re: Coagulation, Rennet, Vegetarian - Poor Curd Set
« Reply #8 on: August 17, 2011, 11:05:12 AM »
Use the guidelines from the manufacturer based on the standardized rennet strength, and adjust the amount of rennet for your batch size. Typically, this is 7-9 ml of 200 IMCU strength rennet per 100 lbs of milk. Another way to look at it is that you are targetting a flocculation point at about 12-14 minutes for most cheeses.

Recipe guidelines that use teaspoons are generally inexact.
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Offline DeejayDebi

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Re: Coagulation, Rennet, Vegetarian - Poor Curd Set
« Reply #9 on: August 19, 2011, 08:05:35 PM »
You say this is new rennet.  Were you using vegetarian rennet before or calf rennet?  I have used veggie rennet and have had variable results with it.

I hope you get it figured out soon.

Same here. I find the veggie rennet does not set up as nicely as the animal varieties. Much softer less firm curds especially with homogenized milk.


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