Ricotta, Queso, Mozzarella, Oh My! – 2nd Cheese Making Class!

As you may or may not know, I have started to teach a class called “Introduction to Artisan Cheese Making” for Metro Continuing Education here in Edmonton, as part of the Adult Continuing Education section.  Yesterday was the second of four classes that have been scheduled for the spring session.  I had the pleasure of welcoming 11 new people to the ranks of Home Cheese Makers.  It is a six-hour class and we covered the basics of cheese making.  We started with a hands-on Whole Milk Ricotta, then I demonstrated how to make a Queso Fresco, including how to press a cheese in the cheesecloth; and we finished with a hands on Mozzarella make.  It was a fun day with the students taking home lots of cheese.  I provided samples of the Queso Fresco and shared some of my 4 month old YEGmental.01-Class collage

Here is yesterday's Queso Fresco after pressing.

Here is yesterday’s Queso Fresco after pressing.

The Queso Fresco's shape is due to the knot in the cheesecloth.

The Queso Fresco’s shape is due to the knot in the cheesecloth.

As I said I still have two more classes scheduled for this spring, but there will me more offered by Metro Continuing Education in the fall.  Until next time….

Clothbound Cheddar Week 8 – Filling In The Gaps

I last posted about my Clothbound Cheddar just after week 5, there was some life to the mould/flora on the bandaging but it wasn’t where I thought it would be.  What a difference 3 more weeks make.

New fridge, old cheese

The Cheddar is in the bottom ripening box.

I have a new dual zone cheese fridge and the lovely Cheddar has gone into a new ripening box and into the fridge.   So without further ado and such I present to you my Clothbound Cheddar at 8 weeks old. (more…)

Home Cheese Making Hack Of The Day

Washing or cleaning the rinds of cheeses can be a pain. Here is something that I use all the time.

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The brush cost me about $3.00 and holds about 1/4 cup of brine.

Let me know if you would like to see more DIY Cheese Making Hacks/solutions. Or if you have one you would like to share email me and you can do a guest post.

Wrapping the Strapping! – Time to wrap the Amber Crossing.

Almost 21 days and it is time to wrap my Spruce Wrapped Reblochon, that have been dubbed Amber Crossing.  There is a point in a washed rind cheese’s life that you need to stop washing and let the cultures and flora do their thing.  How do I know it is time?  Simple the edges of the cheese were starting to soften and it was starting to spread into the centre of the tops of the cheese too.

The geo had spread to the straps I was wondering to wrap or wash more.

The geo had spread to the straps I was wondering to wrap or wash more.

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Amber Crossing – What A Difference 15 Days Make!

My newly named “Amber Crossing” are now 15 days old and my how they have grown.  After yeasting for a few days they started to get their wash which consisted of a mix of Alley Kat’s Amber, PLA and salt.  One thing that I am not know for is my patience, but cheese making has helped me with that and I have been rewarded with these cheese so far.  Yesterday I ran out of the original batch of wash mix so it was time to make some more…

Rabbit ears

Here is the new batch of wash. You let it sit a room temperature for 12 -24 hours before starting to use it.

…and give an update on the cheese.

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An Explosion of Life!-Clothbound Cheddar Week 5

I know I promised to update the state of the Clothbound Cheddar every week, well it has been a few weeks and I realized that I hadn’t posted in a few weeks.

lots of life.

There have been an explosion of flora on the bandages.

So without further ado please enjoy the explosion of life that is my first Clothbound Cheddar.

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The Grand, Early, Opening Of The YEGmental.

On December 31 of 2013, I started making my last cheese of 2013, an Emmental that I have dubbed the YEGmental.  The cheese was almost three months old and armed with my trusty Trier it was time to take a sample and see if the “Music of the Cheese” was really telling true was I being miss lead. (more…)

The Taleggio Time, and I, Forgot!

Have you ever forgot about a cheese?  I have and this is its tale, the tale of the “Taleggio That Time Forgot”.  I was cleaning out my cheese fridge to make room for some more cheese and I stumbled upon this (Warning the following pictures are of a graphic cheese nature and may not be suitable for cheese lovers)

Imagine rooting around in your cheese fridge and finding this!

Imagine rooting around in your cheese fridge and finding this!

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Sprucing Up My Cheese Making By Giving Them The Strap!

This past Christmas I was given some cheese making supplies, and in my stocking I found these peculiar things that looked like paint stirring sticks.  They weren’t, I was relieved I thought my wife was hinting at a reno project, they were spruce straps used for wrapping cheeses such as Vacherin or Mont d’or.  Well March has rolled in like a lamb and I figured it was time for me to use them.  So armed with 14 litres of “HomeMaid” and extra fat whole milk, my trusty Reblochon and basket mould it was time to spring into cheese action.

Spruce Straps, Moulds and Alley Kat's Ambert Ale.  A match made in cheese heaven.

Spruce Straps, Moulds and Alley Kat’s Ambert Ale. A match made in cheese heaven.

I decided that I would use the Reblochon recipe I have, but wash the rinds with a Amber Ale by Alley Cat Brewery, from right here in Edmonton.  With this goal in mind it was time to start. (more…)

And Queso Was Its Name-O!

The was a man he made some cheese and Queso was its name-o.  Well Queso Fresco to be exact!  As part of my class with Metro Continuing Education I demonstrate how to make a Queso Fesco, a fresh pressed cheese that is ready to eat the next day.  I like to age mine a week before eating, but it is strictly a personal preference.

Starter kit

I gathered up my basic equipment and began.

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