My Special Project Cheese at 9 days

On the 16th of April I made two cheeses, a Cheddar for my son, and my “Special Project” or Experiment Cheese.  It is this cheese I want to post about.  Normally I try to stick to the semi-firm or hard cheeses, I have been moving towards semi-soft/trappist style with my Irish Danes, I think this one should be along the lines of those.  I took 1/4 of the curd from the Cheddar (before cooking the curd, just after cutting) and let it drain under its own weight, flipping it every so often.  After a few hours I took it out of the hoop to dry and drain some more, I think I rushed taking it out of the hoop as it is now the size of a large fish cake.   I was hoping for something the size of a Camembert.  Well we learn from our mistakes.

I was given some scotch by a friend a few years ago and it was just sitting in my cupboard not doing anything (I love scotch but I have to be in the mood to drink it) so I thought why not use this on the rind.  I had heard of a Scottish Cheese called “Bishop Kennedy” which is a washed rind cheese done with scotch too, so I thought that maybe I was on the right track  After 3 days of “drying”, I mixed 1/2 cup of this Blended Scotch and 1/4 tsp of non-iodized picking salt in a small mason jar.  I then donned my trusty blue latex free gloves and “washed the rind every  day for two days now I am at every two days.  I just dip my gloved fingers into the mix and then rub the cheese gently.   I have not been using a “mini-cave/ripening box” with this one, the humidity seems to be holding at acceptable levels.

Now at 9 days on I am starting to see the colour develop on the rind, it is a nice pinkish-amber colour, which is what I was looking for.  The aroma can only be described as yeasty mushrooms, again what I was looking for.   I should continue with the wash for another week or so.  I am staring to get some “wild” or naturally occurring Geotrichum (Geo) mould with the rind,  no matter how much I sanitize the “cave” I get it.  I think it is something that is the air, I am not too concerned with it as Geo is one of the “good” mould.

Here is my disclaimer, these pictures were taken with my Blackberry so quality is a bit of an issue.

This is the “Top” fo the cheese. Note the colour development on the rind

The colour is even showing on the sides, they are still quite soft.

Have a great day, go make some cheese or at least eat some you enjoy.

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