|Ingredients for for 1 kg, yielding 4 cheeses:|
6-8 litres milk Optional:
3 pinches of freeze dried mix starter culture - or use ½ dl. soured milk mixed with ½ dl. plain yogurt
1 pinch of freeze dried white mould starter culture
2 ml. rennet
300 g. salt dissolved in 2-2½ litres of boiled water (for brine salting)
- or 4 tsp fine salt (for dry salting)
Grapeseed oilRequired tools:
Large pot with lidHelpfull tools (non-essential):
Cheese mats (fine and coarse)
Cheese wrapping paper
Thermometer clip holder
Cooler or thermobox
We recommend you leave the milk un-opened on the kitchen counter for approximately 10 hours prior to beginning the process. This allows the milk to slowly gain room temperature.
NOTE: Our recipe provides several methods for applying mould culture, correcting acidity, salting and maturation. Each method will provide you with nice results, one method is not superior to the other. However, before you begin, read carefully through the entire recipe and decide on which method you wish to follow. If you are a beginner, we recommend you choose the easiest methods and these are; mould grafting the milk, brine salting and to mature the cheese in a cooler or thermobox.
Everything begins with hygiene
Hygiene is crucial when making cheese: Take a pot, fill it with water, cover with lid and bring it to boil. Once boiling, now scold each of your tools suitet for scolding. Carefully pour boiling water over; cheese trays, moulds, mats, colander, etc. in order to sterilize them. Use a dish brush for scrubbing where possible.Steps:
- Pour the milk into a large pot and slowly heat to 32°C.
- In a small glass of cold water, blend together starter culture and white mould culture, add that blend to the pot and stir for ½ minute. (Alternatively white mould culture can be applied to the cheese crust with a brush or a spray bottle later on in the process)
- Cover with a lid and wrap a towel around the pot to keep it warm. Let it rest for 60 minutes.
- Mix rennet in a small glas of cold water, add it to the pot and stir carefully for ½ minute. Let the milk rest for 30 minutes now.
- The milk should now have coagulated – this is curd!
- Cut the curd in 2 cm cubes using a long knife or cheese cutter that reaches to the bottom of the pot.
- Stir the cubes with a long skimmer to seperate them from one another.
- Stir the curd every 15 minutes for 1 hour.
- Place the moulds in a cheese tray lined with fine cheese mat at the bottom - fill the moulds with curd.
- Cover the moulds with a piece of fine cheese mat and cover that with a cheese tray, facing upside down. Hold the trays firmly together, as you tilt them to let excess whey escape. Turn them over on flip side.
- Keep repeating this step frequently until less and less whey runs off. Keep the whey for baking or making a delicious Ricotta.
- After 24 hours of draining, remove the curd from the moulds.
- Now it is time for brine salting. If you have chosen to do dry salting, simply skip this step. Dry salting is done later in the process. Preparing brine for brie and camembert is the exact same as for feta; Dissolve 300g salt in 2-2½ litres of boiling water. Remember to make it prior to when you actually need it as it needs to cool down to 20°C. Soak the cheeses in brine for 2-4 hours. Use a plate to weigh them down under the surface.
- Place the cheeses on a coarse cheese mat in the bottom of a cheese tray.
Place another piece of coarse cheese mat on top of the cheeses and finish off with a cheese tray, facing upside down.
- Move the trays to a cooler place - no more than 8 - 12°C, that provides high humidity. You can easily provide such conditions in a cooler or a thermobox using cooling elements to regulate the temperature. The cheese trays serve to encapsule humidity around the cheeses. Use the cooling elements to keep the temperature steady between 8 and 12°C - this is the ideal temperture for mould growth. It takes about 7 - 12 days before the mould begins to develop. Replace the cooling elements daily and check the temperature.
- Turn the cheese trays over on the flip side once a day. Make sure that the mats do not stick to the cheeses, and make sure to ventilate fresh air around the cheeses.
- When mould has developed (in 1-2 weeks) it is time for dry salting - ONLY if you did not do brine saltning earlier in the process! You do dry salting simply by sprinkling the cheeses with fine salt!
- Wrap the cheese up in cheese paper and refrigerate for 1-3 weeks while they mature.
Optional: 1-2 weeks into the maturation process in the refrigerator, you may soak the cheese in grapeseed oil (or place them in a vacuum sealed bag). This will slow down maturation and make a milder cheese.