4-5 hrs for inoculation and curd preparation
1 hr waxing
4-6 weeks ageing
Ingredients:6 L unhomogenised (whole) milk
¼ sachet of MM mesophilic culture (1 smidgen tsp)
3 ml calcium chloride
2 rennet tablets diluted in 20ml non-chlorinated water
2 ½ tsp salt
Beer for soaking curds 330mls. A dark beer will give more colour contrast, we used a chocolate stout.
Material and Equipment:8-10L pot
Draining spoon, curd knife
Small container to dilute rennet
Colander lined with cheese cloth
Container to soak curds
Method:Culture addition and renneting:
Heat the milk to 32°C and add the calcium chloride
Stir in mesophilic starter culture
Cover and let milk ripen for 60 min at 32°C
Add in diluted rennet, stir for 1 min
Cover and let milk set for 45 min at 32°C, or until you have a clean break (check regularly)
Once curd is set, cut into 1- 2cm cubes
Stir the curd slowly for 5-10 min until the curd surface starts to firm up
Cooking and soaking the curd
Slowly heat the curds to 39°C by increasing the heat 1-2°C every 5 minutes.
Once at temperature stir the curds to keep separated for 30 minutes. After 15 minutes remove 1 cup of whey then remove a further cup of whey at the end of the 30 minutes. When cooked the curds should be firm throughout when broken and have some resistance when pressed with fingers.
Leave the curds in the whey for another 30 minutes stirring every 5-10 minutes to keep from matting together.
Remove the whey and ladle the curds into a colander lined with muslin and allow to drain for 30 minutes stirring gently occasionally.
Transfer the drained curds into another bowl or container then pour the beer over the curds and soak for 45 minutes.
Drain off the beer and add the salt to the curds and mix through so the salt is evenly dispersed throughout the curd.
Soaking Curds in Beer
Draining after Soaking in Beer
Transfer the curds to the pressing mould lined with cheese cloth. Press for 30 minutes at 5kg, 1 hour at 10kg then 16 hours at 20kg. Turn and redress the cheese periodically during the pressing.
Moulding the Curds in the Press
Pressing the Curds
Cheese Ready for Ageing
Remove from the press and store the cheese for at 12°C turning daily and allowing the surface to dry off. When the surface is dry, wax the cheese. We used red and black wax and got a great deep purple/burgundy colour.
Age at 12°C for 4-6 weeks.