Author Topic: Pressed Cheeses - Minimizing Cloth Lines  (Read 992 times)

Offline steffb503

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Pressed Cheeses - Minimizing Cloth Lines
« on: October 17, 2011, 05:41:52 AM »
Not sure why I am having such issues.
I started with regular lightweight muslin. I tried gauze. I tried curtain sheer. I tried The cheese maker's draining bag.
Non of them work. I have a very hard time getting all the creases and wrinkles out. is there something I am missing?  Seems if I use a flat piece of fabric no matter what I do I will have creases, no way around it. I made a liner out of curtain sheer with a bottom and side to fit perfectly but bottom seam is now bulkier than I would like and I get an unsightly ridge.
I have been around fabric my whole life so I can get any type i want, just not sure what to use.
Has any one tried T-shirt fabric? Seems like it would have enough give to wrap nicely .
I really do not want to purchase 3 Kadova molds with liners since I already ave 4 large molds with followers.


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Offline george (MaryJ)

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Re: Pressed Cheeses - Minimizing Cloth Lines
« Reply #1 on: October 17, 2011, 06:21:56 AM »
I'm not sure if I'm going to be able to explain this well enough, but I'll give it a shot.

While I don't mind creases per se, I've been playing around with different methods and what I've come up with that works pretty well is actually two different things at different points in the process.  The first is not exactly perfect, but over the various flips and redresses, it seems to work pretty well. 

What I have to do is get the curds into the mold, put on the follower and then start pulling up on the cheesecloth bit by bit around the sides while I'm also pushing down on the follower.  I sort of shift the cheesecloth around a little bit while pulling up on it, so that while there are still creases, most of them are NOT near the bottom where the cheese will end up getting pressed to.  Hard to do neatly with the initial curds, but works better after the first redress when I pull off Trick #2.

When it's time to redress, I get the cheese out of the mold, pull off the cheesecloth and then center the damp cheesecloth OVER the mold - but I don't actually push it down.  Then I stick the flipped cheese on top and start pushing down and let the cheese itself work most of the creases out.  I still do the follower/push/manipulate-the-cheesecloth thing afterward, but I get a better start on that, beginning with the first redress, since I've basically let the cheese do most of the uncreasing for me.  I just have to be careful not to let the cheesecloth get caught and ripped in the "half-holes" around the top of the mold (I'm mostly using the stainless one from NE Cheesemaking).

Only weird part to all that is that at the first redress I usually have to also sort of squoosh the vaguely-cheese-shaped cylinder around the sides to get it to fit into the mold again that first time - no matter how quick I am on that redress, it will usually slump a bit on me, so I just have to bully it back into shape.

I still get a few creases here and there, but very minimal.  Especially when I flip and redress an extra time or two from whatever the recipe technically calls for.

If I have to be a grownup, can I at least be telekinetic too?

Offline John (CH)

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Re: Pressed Cheeses - Minimizing Cloth Lines
« Reply #2 on: October 17, 2011, 07:25:01 AM »
In addition to george's great reply, there's some info on how to minimize cheesecloth crease lines in the Wiki: Surface Defects, Cracks article with similar pulling cloth straight up and in removing cloth entirely in later after turning higher pressure press.

Offline dthelmers

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Re: Pressed Cheeses - Minimizing Cloth Lines
« Reply #3 on: October 17, 2011, 07:50:05 AM »
I've got a looser weave cheese cloth that I use in the mold. I drain my curds in it, then gather up the corners nice and tight so it's like a balloon. I lower this into my mold keeping tension on the top. Then I open the bundle, drape the cloth over the sides, and pull one piece of the cloth over the top of the curds and place my follower on top of it. I press for a half hour usually, then take it out and redress it. I smooth the cloth over the cheese and then lower it back into the mold. The weave of the cloth is coarse enough to form to the shape of the cheese with no wrinkles. I couldn't do this with my butter muslin.
Dave in CT

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Re: Pressed Cheeses - Minimizing Cloth Lines
« Reply #4 on: October 17, 2011, 08:30:09 AM »
Two thoughts:
  • Do the 'pull up on the cloth gently all around the cheese in the mold' on the first dressing, but don't fold the cloth over the top of the cheese. Just put the follower in place on top of the bare cheese, then drape the cloth on the top around the follower.
  • When it comes to the first redressing, undress the cheese and . . . go naked! The curds should have knitted well enough to go without the cloth. If you're pressing very heavy or the cheese is really moist & soft you might not get away with this because the curds will try to sneak out the mold holes.  :o
My two cents of experience....

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Offline george (MaryJ)

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Re: Pressed Cheeses - Minimizing Cloth Lines
« Reply #5 on: October 17, 2011, 09:32:02 AM »
Right, Boofer, I should mention something about my version of your Point #1 -

Somewhere along the line I saw something about not wanting the stainless follower to be in direct contact with the cheese.  Don't remember where I saw it or what the reason was, but it's not a big deal so I do this anyway:

Other than the big piece of cheesecloth in the mold itself, I also use a small piece and wrap it around one side of the follower, and use that wrapped side against the top of the cheese.  Gives a nice smooth top.   :)
If I have to be a grownup, can I at least be telekinetic too?

Offline steffb503

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Re: Pressed Cheeses - Minimizing Cloth Lines
« Reply #6 on: October 17, 2011, 10:08:57 AM »
Well I will give it another try today.