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Just finished our first batch of farmhouse cheddar and it is quite tasty <img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/drool.gif" alt="Drool" title="drool" />

Here it is after we drained off the whey and scooped it into the mold:

[Image: Molding.jpg]


This was a beginner's recipe that only takes 8 pounds to press the moisture out, so we used a 1-gal water jug. You can't see it, but the jug is sitting on top of the cheese mold and the mold has small holes in it for the whey to drip out. That is my canning pot I used to make the cheese in and I set the mold on the canning rack so it would drain underneath. Some of the cheddars take up to 50 pounds so you have to go buy barbell weights and add them over a specified time period.

[Image: Pressing.jpg]

It only stayed in the mold for one day and then sat on a bamboo mat to dry. You have to turn it over twice a day so it dries evenly.

And here is the finished product. Took 3 gallons of whole milk and 1 pint heavy cream:

[Image: FinishedDrying.jpg]
looks great
<img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/worship.gif" alt="Worship" title="worship" />
oh man that looks good.
looks like a fair amount of work as well.

what about provolone, can you make provolone?
Quote:oh man that looks good.
looks like a fair amount of work as well.

what about provolone, can you make provolone?

Yes! We have a recipe book for all kinds of cheeses. The provolone uses thermophilic culture instead of mesophilic culture so we would have to order it.

The cheese was more work than I expected - took over 4 hours in the kitchen because you have to maintain a constant low temperature over a long period of time and my electric stovetop isn't the best. The last stage you bring the temp up to 100 F over 30 minutes so you have to use a hot water bath in the sink.

I made some soft cheese in college and discovered why cheese cost so much - it takes a lot of milk to make cheese. We ended up with about 3 pounds of cheese from a little over 3 gallons of milk.

The kit I bought came with dye to make it orange - no THANK-YOU! It also came with red wax to seal it but we didn't bother. I got my vacuum sealer out and sealed all but 2, which we put in the fridge to eat right away.
I checked out those little Irish cows-Derry cows I think they're called and one gives out like 2 gallons of milk a DAY... so cheese would be a good thing to make with it as it keeps so well. I'm like 'what the hell would we do with all that milk?"

how does it slice and taste? looks so good!

My Persian neighbor made yogurt from his goat's milk that way-he had to hold the temp at like 100 for a while-then put in the culture via his old batch of yogurt then just set it on the table covered until it set up. He'd do that in a big stainless steel pan. They'd usually put a lot of cucumber and mint into the yogurt for summertime body cooling. Cool from the inside out and their skin was so soft and juicy.
Quote:The cheese was more work than I expected - took over 4 hours in the kitchen because you have to maintain a constant low temperature over a long period of time and my electric stovetop isn't the best. The last stage you bring the temp up to 100 F over 30 minutes so you have to use a hot water bath in the sink.

I made some soft cheese in college and discovered why cheese cost so much - it takes a lot of milk to make cheese. We ended up with about 3 pounds of cheese from a little over 3 gallons of milk.
I guess it's good practice for when you guys are living in the yurt and it's long enough after kidding season that you have a huge surplus of goat milk.
Quote:how does it slice and taste? looks so good!

The texture is a bit on the crumbly side - like a moist feta - and has a wonderful taste. It was very bland until it aged some. We are going to try some real cheddar next and it takes about 50 pounds to push out the moisture but you get a smoother texture.
Quote:I guess it's good practice for when you guys are living in the yurt and it's long enough after kidding season that you have a huge surplus of goat milk.

That is exactly what our thinking is and why we are experimenting now. We even went into town (Houston) one Sat to a Farmer's Market that was supposed to have fresh goat's milk but they weren't there that weekend. We will be making a smaller batch since the goat's milk is higher than a cat's back.

If you use pasteurized milk you have to add a small amount calcium chloride or the curds won't form right. I don't think you can buy raw milk so the only way to get it is to know a dairy farmer or have your own goat or cow. The farmer's market goat's milk will be better than store-bought because the store stuff is "ultra" pasteurized and is not recommended at all by our cheese book.

I used to make my own yogurt in college when Dannon got so high I couldn't afford it. I bought a Salton yogurt maker for $10 and it paid for itself pretty quick. You make it like gard's neighbor - heat up the milk, add the starter (leftover yogurt from previous batch) and the yogurt maker held it at the proper warm temperature to grow the yogurt critters.
I found a local dairy at this site that sells raw milk:
http://www.sustainabletable.org/shop/dairymap/
Scroll down to the map and click on your state. I don't know about Texas laws, but in Oklahoma farmers can sell raw milk. It's grocery stores that have to sell pasteurized milk.

I'm wondering if homogenized milk is causing some of the clogged arteries these days. I just read about an enzyme in milk that gets altered when the milk is homogenized. It causes the interior walls of the blood vessels to become sticky and accumulate cholesterol.
(Ewww). Doctors can't or won't tell you why arteries collect fat.
I wouldn't care to experiment with making bleu cheese...
Quote:I found a local dairy at this site that sells raw milk:
http://www.sustainabletable.org/shop/dairymap/
Scroll down to the map and click on your state. I don't know about Texas laws, but in Oklahoma farmers can sell raw milk. It's grocery stores that have to sell pasteurized milk.

I'm wondering if homogenized milk is causing some of the clogged arteries these days. I just read about an enzyme in milk that gets altered when the milk is homogenized. It causes the interior walls of the blood vessels to become sticky and accumulate cholesterol.
(Ewww). Doctors can't or won't tell you why arteries collect fat.

You are right, SJ! Raw milk sale is legal in Texas if you go to the farm and buy it. Raw milk is supposed to be a lot better for making cheese and there is a dairy close by in Alvin. The dairy farm in Alvin has a one-time $10 fee for a "cow share". This was how the dairies got around the raw milk laws - they sold shares of their cows to people, so they could legally buy their own milk since it was "their" cow (or share of one).
Quote:The purpose of pasteurization is to eliminate all bacteria and enzymes. The process is not selective - all friendly bacteria and beneficial enzymes are destroyed along with any potential pathogens. Most people don't realize this actually makes pasteurized milk more susceptible to contamination because it has no good bacteria to fight off the bad.

Raw goat's milk is supposed to be even better for you than cow's milk and with proper sanitation and refrigeration it doesn't have that "goaty" flavor.

I found the above quote to be interesting. There is a lady on a dairy goat forum who is always running tests and experiments and had a jar of her own raw goat's milk next to a jar of pasteurized cow's milk from the store in her fridge. Long after the commercial cow's milk turned blinky and molded, her goat's milk was still fresh.

I also did not know about the "ultra" pasteurization..... I have been wondering how the dates on dairy products is so much farther out in the future now than it used to be - 6 weeks instead of 2 on sour cream - now I know.
<img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/cow.gif" alt="Cow" title="cow" />
How does the chedder cheese run taste wise?
I buy either sharp or extra sharp chedder cheese. Can you make such a comparison to any degree at all?
Quote:How does the chedder cheese run taste wise?
I buy either sharp or extra sharp chedder cheese. Can you make such a comparison to any degree at all?

We got busy and never made the cheddar...... we bought the weights and everything LOL. We will probably try soon - maybe over July 4th when I am off - I have been wanting to go visit the local dairy and buy my $10 "cow share" so we can buy raw milk for drinking as well as cheese making.

The crumbly farmhouse cheddar we made got sharper as it aged, which is how I also like my cheese.
Yes extra sharp cheddar was on sale here quite reasonably,
slobber and drool,
I love it.

Quote: There is a lady on a dairy goat forum who is always running tests and experiments
and had a jar of her own raw goat's milk
next to a jar of pasteurized cow's milk Scream
her goat's milk was still fresh.

Wow.
I remember way back in Trieste Italy in ....early 60s, the milk was delivered daily in recycle glass bottles
and it just was full of ...life.
What can I say, it was different.
It was never too cold either.

That goat's milk note was very interesting.
my neighbors who made yoghurt from goat's milk also made cheese... Nubians were their best milk goats but they had a few other kinds as well.. very happy goats. It tasted goaty but not strongly and I ended up really liking it.

That's what I put in my son's bottle-organic-but pasteurized goat's milk... I'd get it in quarts at Trader Joe's... it wasn't any more expensive than processed baby formula. He really blossomed on it. It's fats are naturally homogenized too. Small digestible globules. All kinds of foreign mothers and grandmothers told me they used goat's milk to feed all kinds of babies-including humans 'in their country'.
Yes, of course we are all fed raw milk as babies - well the mothers that breast feed do.

Today - My raw milk arrived ! 3 large plastic bottles in a polystyrene enclosed container. Once you have a few boxes they pick them up and use them again. The enclosed leaflet has a bit of news about farm sourced food and the (apparently obligatory) warning message about "may contain organisms harmful to health". Sod em'. I glugged down a load even though it was a bit warm then stuck them in the fridge. Later on my tea tastes like IT HAS MILK IN IT. Man, this stuff is good !

I did try approaching my local vegetarian/health food shop. They went all weird and started babbling stuff about "if you want to risk getting <insert scary disease name here>". I tried to explain that they have been misinformed, but they were REALLY rude about it and just shooed me off to post something on their notice board. Christ. All they harped on about was "we're Vegan so we don't know". They would not even consider putting up the link to the site near their fridge and started trying to change the subject to not selling that much milk these days. WTF ? Apparently these are the holier than though Vegans who are going to save us all ! Wankers.

Anyhow, back to my milk.