Author Topic: Experiments with Telemea-type cheese  (Read 1255 times)

Offline stoned

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Experiments with Telemea-type cheese
« on: February 27, 2012, 12:47:04 PM »
Hi all,

After many days of browsing, I recently got hold of a recipe for Romanian telemea de vaca (soft white cheese from cow's milk). A few experiments later (I found quite varying recipes), I am now making a lovely cheese similar to feta, but with a saltier, more intense flavor. I begin with 10L of fresh pasteurized milk, then add CaCl and MAO11 culture, followed an hour later by liquid rennet. This then sits quietly for an hour and a half, after which I cut the curds into roughly 1 - 2cm pieces, which then rests for 10 minutes. I then ladle the curds into a cheesecloth and allow it to drain for another hour and a half.  The curds then go into smallish round molds (± 300gm each), and placed in Dutch-type presses under  for 12 hours (using ± 3Kg of pressure). The resulting cheese is then refrigerated in a 10 - 15% brine solution (I'm still experimenting with this) for a week, after which it is ready for consumption. I have not yet determined the shelf life of the end-product, as it normally does not last more than a week before being completely consumed - I am, however, conservatively assuming a shelf life of two weeks after release.

I am enjoying making these cheeses immensely, and am quite happy with the end-result of my labors. However, is this real telemea, or something similar / quite different? Any ideas from the crowd will be greatly appreciated.

Kind regards

Fred


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Offline DeejayDebi

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Re: Experiments with Telemea-type cheese
« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2012, 09:08:02 PM »
I am not familaur with this type of cheese but it looks nice and creamy and not dry and crumbly like feta.

Your press is beautiful!

Offline Corina

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Re: Experiments with Telemea-type cheese
« Reply #2 on: February 27, 2012, 11:28:37 PM »
The texture differs with age. After being made, the telemea is not eaten fresh, usually. It gains in taste if it kept in brine longer. Here people who have sheep or cows or both, make telemea and then keep it in wood barrels with brine. For a few month. it is called old telemea, it is salted, and the texture is more creamy, but not very, it can break when cut, and it has a special taste. You can also find fresh telemea, the one that you described, but the old one is far better. It can be aged for over one year.
We buy telemea from some shepperds, a lot, and we keep it in the cellar in a barrel, in brine. We take one piece out, wash it and eat it. It is great.

Offline stoned

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Re: Experiments with Telemea-type cheese
« Reply #3 on: February 28, 2012, 12:27:58 AM »
Thanks for the replies! I am still a newbie, but have been learning a lot in the last few months. Corina, I did found that the taste improved with aging in brine: it starts out nearly tasteless, but then quickly develops. And the taste is indeed special, but I have not been able to accurately describe it - like cream cheese, but slightly more cheddary with a lovely lingering aftertaste. I am currently using cow's milk, but am planning to relocate to Transylvania in 2016 to farm with Carpathian Water Buffalo (Bivol romanesc) and to make cheese (telemea de buffala, buffalo blue, chaource . . . ?).

Kind regards

Fred

Offline Corina

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Re: Experiments with Telemea-type cheese
« Reply #4 on: February 28, 2012, 02:49:41 AM »
Wow, please send a sign, mabe I could help, if only with some information.
Transylvania is a great place, I was born there....
An this is a great ideea, as people are not grownig Bivoli anymore, as many as they used to, even if it is a great animal and the milk is special.More carefree than cow and with better milk.

If you can, leave the cheese in water brine or whey brine for more, 6 month or so, and then you ll see.
Here we also have something named Burduf , that means somthing like bag cheese.
The fresh cheese is mixed with salt with the hand and then put in a sheep stomach skin pressed with the hand to have no air, and then hanged and left to age. It ferments a little and the smell is strong an stingy and the taste wonderfully strong..


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Offline stoned

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Re: Experiments with Telemea-type cheese
« Reply #5 on: February 28, 2012, 07:43:39 AM »
Hi Corina, I have heard of Burduf, and decided that I will give that a wide berth! I saw that telemea is normally stored in wooden barrels, and would like to try that. Thanks for the info on aging - I will definitely prepare a batch for long-term storage: it will be very interesting to see what happens. One of my first batches did come out quite different, but amazingly delicious, as I could only pasteurize the milk 24 hours after obtaining it (there was another batch in the way at the time), and I allowed a 12 hour setting period (not the 1.5 hours that I now use) resulting in a curd mass that looked like a sponge. It smelled quite acidic, but with a strong cheddary flavor. At first I wanted to end it to my friend's pigs, but eventually decided to continue with draining and pressing, and got a cheese with a wonderfully full taste quite like mature cheddar. Live and learn!

Offline Corina

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Re: Experiments with Telemea-type cheese
« Reply #6 on: February 28, 2012, 12:15:18 PM »
Never feed any cheese to the pigs! As bad as it looks any cheese has potential. ;D ;D