Hellio iratherfly/Yoav! I'm ready to take you up on your offer to help me make another try at Valencay!
I followed your link to Peter Dixon's recipe and have a bunch of questions after reading it. Normally I'd have to make all choices myself but since obviously as a beginner I'm likely to make some wrong choices I thought I'd ask you what choices you'd advise.
You said in your post that you'd help me with a remake of the Valencay if I wanted to try again and yup, I want to try again. So, I've looked at Peter Dixon's recipe and these are my questions. I'll post these on the forum too in case you'd prefer to answer there so others can read too. Here's a link to Peter Dixon's recipe so interested folks can check it out and comment also. http://www.dairyfoodsconsulting.com/recipes_lactic.shtml
First, a few facts of the make:
Milk: I'll be using 12 or 13 quarts raw goats milk 1-3 days old. ( usually 13 qts. but 12 might be easier for figuring out amounts) The last 4 quarts won't have been cooled at all unless you advise that.
Now for the questions:
1) Which cultures should I use? I'll list my options of what I have here: Chooszit: MM100, MA4001, MA4002, MT1 LYO, TA61,
PC-VB, Geo-13, PLA, LBC 80, PC SAM
Abiasa: Thermophile Type B
Yes, I know not all are options but I just cut and pasted my whole stash list.
2) Do I have to pasteurize my milk like he says? I've never done that and would prefer not to if possible. I'm not selling the cheese at all.
How many hours of aging after culturing do you suggest given that the milk is raw. Peter Dixon's range is 15-48 hours.
Given all this, how much culture do you suggest for raw goat's milk?
And how much of my vegetable double strength rennet should I add once the culture has had it's time?
What type of mold should I use? Don't have the traditional pyramid ones but have a number of basket type ones (some from you) including some ricotta molds that are pretty small and may fit the proportions closer than the bigger basket ones I have. P.S. what do you charge for those pyramid ones? Perhaps I and others will be inspired to buy some from you if you post the price here now.
Should I pre-drain in that lovely synthetic cheesecloth bag I got from you? For how long? I pre-drained this last batch too long and then it didn't go well into the molds......it was already dryish because of the rennet amount. I still have to salt and ash it. I was too sick to do anything but milk the last 3 days.
Hope you can answer before I have to make this cheese but perhaps others will have great suggestions too. All are welcome. I'm "singling" iratherfly out because he offered.
Just because I know I always like it when there's photos, I'll attach one of my mold inventory. I do also have the two long cylindrical molds you sent in the last order.....those aren't in the photo.