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CHEESE TYPE BOARDS (for Cheese Lovers and Cheese Makers) => RENNET COAGULATED - Hard Other => Topic started by: NZcheesemkr on February 25, 2013, 12:39:36 AM

Title: PH of caerphilly
Post by: NZcheesemkr on February 25, 2013, 12:39:36 AM
I have had a problem with my cheese making for quite a while now and it is really starting to annoy me, no matter which recipe I try I cannot get the PH below 6.3.
 I had read somewhere that to get the cheese to melt well you need a PH of around 5.4 - 5.1.
All the cheeses that I have made do not melt at all, even my Mozzarella! both the 30 min recipe and the starter type. I have made Havarti, stirred curd cheddar, Swiss, farmhouse chive cheddar even had a go at Mobier.
Yesterday, made a Caerphilly, and followed the recipe from Tim Smiths 'Making Artisan Cheese', I started with store bought whole milk, past and homo , I used a Flora Danica starter. The PH reading of the milk was 6.8, when I reached the stage where I was to 'cheddar' the curds briefly, I had a PH of 6.6.
After the first 10 min pressing I took the whey an did a PH test with my Digital meter, the PH was 6.6, after the second flip ten minutes later the PH was still 6.6, 20 minutes later I did the final flip and was to leave the cheese overnight PH 6.5, in the morning I took some more whey and tested it, the PH was 6.7 ! . The whole process was supposed to take about 3 1/2  hrs, but waiting for the curd to increase in acidity I waited for nearly 5 1/2 hrs, and had to hoop up as my wife wanted her kitchen back so we could get diner started.

So I thought that maybe my starter had passed its use by date, so today I made another Caerphilly, same milk, same recipe but I opened a new pack of DVS starter, a meso starter, MA11, the results of this cheese were pretty much the same as yesterday, only at the final flip before leaving the cheese overnight the PH was 6.3.
I have had this problem with other cheeses as well, none of them will melt an become 'stringy' and are no good for making the good old cheese on toast

Does anyone have any suggestions as to what would likely be a solution to my predicament.
Title: Re: PH of caerphilly
Post by: BobE102330 on February 25, 2013, 06:25:03 AM
A newbie guess: temperature. Are you heating in a double boiler or directly?  Meso cultures will die over 106 for a significant time. Direct heating could be making hot spots that kill your culture.

Another thought is your milk. Try a different one. Check the dairy code on the bottles. I've been to several stores that the house brand and "premium" milks are bottled in the same plant.  Ironically the premium brand from 100 miles away is priced higher than they charge for a local dairy's milk that I like better for cheese.
Title: Re: PH of caerphilly
Post by: JeffHamm on February 25, 2013, 11:56:38 AM
Hi NZcheesemkr,

I've used FD a lot and generally my cheeses will melt well in a grilled cheese sandwhich.  I've had one or two that would go all stringy and gooey, but not sure what I did different.  I don't have a ph meter, so I'm assuming I hit the right ph and moisture content.  I do find that if I stirr a lot that "gooey" melting is less likely to occur.  What are you using for milk?  I get good results from Homebrand standard blue top (from countdown) but silvertop is by far the best.  Dairy Dale seemed to shatter on me, and the only goat's milk I've tried was uht and I got a couple semilactics from it, but it was hard going and the final cheese very goaty.

- Jeff
Title: Re: PH of caerphilly
Post by: NZcheesemkr on February 25, 2013, 02:28:02 PM
Hi Bob, I do not think the temp is an issue as I am using a dbl boiler, initial temp when adding starter was 32 C, (90 F) later raised and held at 33 C (92 F) and stirred frequently to stop matting, for 40 Min's.
The second batch I made I did use a different milk, the same as you Jeff, Countdown 'Homebrand'. I have just unhooped my 2ND attempt at Caerphilly and drained off some whey and tested the PH, and to my surprise, a reading of 5.3.
I am beginning to think that my problem may lie in the starter, as I have used 'homebrand' milk before and had similar results with the cheese not melting.
The milk I normally use is Green Valley full cream milk, though it is not cream line, that I get from the markets in Takapuna, Jeff you will know where that is, have had the same problem with that milk. although the cheese is nice with crackers and tomato etc.
I will be ordering some more FD today

Jeff did you enter any of your cheese into the NZ cheese Awards this year?
Title: Re: PH of caerphilly
Post by: JeffHamm on February 25, 2013, 04:28:25 PM
No, I didn't enter.  I tend to eat all mine, and if it were good enough to win a prize, all the more reason for me to eat it! :)

- Jeff