[Sca-cooks] Cheese making

Michael Gunter countgunthar at hotmail.com
Tue Jan 15 09:15:29 PST 2008

Okay, I'm through with 12th Night Feast, thank Heaven. 
So my Yenta Triumvirate then informed me to get to work
because I have to enter Kingdom A&S competition in a
month. They want me to put together basically the same
entry that I had for Laurel's Prize Tourney but to fix and 
document all the things I did wrong.
My biggest failure for LPT was the Slip-Coat cheese. I 
couldn't get it to curdle and when I finally did the end product
was so bitter that I wouldn't let anyone taste it. 
With trepidation I approached the making of this cheese again
this weekend.
I bought a gallon of organic whole milk, a half pint of heavy
whipping cream and a very small carton of unflavored yogurt.
The main problems I had last time were due to the fact I had
no starter in the milk for the rennet to "grab hold of" so this
time I added just a bit of the yogurt to the milk/cream mix.
This was heated and then left to cool then the rennet was
added. Nothing happened. Growl! About a teaspoon of white
vinegar was added to curdle the milk but still nothing. Gaar!
Well, I figured the milk was still too warm so I covered the
pot and let it sit overnight. Getting up the next morning I
was grumbling to myself that a dumb Mongol can put milk in
a waterskin and ride all day and get cheese and I can't do
it in a modern kitchen! But I was delighted to see the milk
had set beautifully overnight. In fact the curds were about
the consistancy of yogurt. Much better than the delicate
little things Digby references. 
The curds were ladled into cheesecloth and left to drain.
The cheesecloth changed and weight added and left. 
Again the cheesecloth was changed and more weight added.
It's been draining for two days now, this morning the rind
was salted and re-wrapped. The cheese looks good, no
mold and tastes nice. A bit sharp and almost a touch of 
goat cheese. But good. It still has a few weeks to set and
dry and develop flavor but I think this time it may be a
The next project is to make my sausages with the correct
lean to fat ratio and hand mince it all for stuffing.
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