Cheese Update, July 29

26 Jul

It is with regret that I report my efforts in making hard cheeses were not a success.  And I had such high hopes, especially for the smelly Picking Cheese!

It was hard waiting the month before checking it, but I did.  I had marked on my calendar when to check it.  I waited and waited.  And at last came the day.  So you can imagine my disappointment when I examined it this week and  found it had completely molded!  Even the cloth I had wrapped it in and the inside of the pan I was using as a drain shelf was covered with mold.   I had to throw out the cheese and wrap.  The pan needed a through scrubbing and bleach.  I’m sure the problem was because I didn’t store it in a cool enough place.   It would have been best if I had an old refrigerator or maybe even if I had used a cooler and continually added ice.    It may have been better if I had used a cheese mold and press.

The Cornish Cheese is ok.  Certainly not great.  Very crumbly and dry.  It tastes only acceptable.  I tried some plain and it was ok, but very bland.  One day I added some to an omelet.  I won’t do that again.  I was able to eat it, but can’t say I enjoyed it.  I am debating whether to keep it or throw it out.

On a brighter note, the fresh cheeses were great!   I was able to use the lime cheese until a last week, when I noticed mold.  The other fresh cheese (I didn’t label it so don’t know if it was the ricotta or the mozzarella) lasted quite a while too.  And the Feta is still very tasty!   I imagine with it being in brine, it will last indefinitely, just get more salty.  Unless I use the Feta as the salt for a dish, it needs rinsed before eating.    I shared the fresh cheeses with my daughter-in-law who loved them.

One interesting thing in my cheese making venture was what to do with the whey.  Since I never want to waste anything, I froze it, thinking I would use it later in one of the ways I had seen online.  Well I found a use for it this summer.  Homemade gator aid!  With all the hot weather my daughter and I had talked of the need for electrolytes.  She mentioned she had seen recipes online.  So I looked.  What I ended up making was a combination of several recipes.  My gator aid consists of baking soda, salt, sugar, lemon Koolaid, whey and water.  I used amounts listed in the recipes, then adjusted to taste.  The result was a refreshing, low cost yummy hot weather drink.

So to sum up my cheese making efforts, I’d say it was an adventure.   Will I try it again?   Definitely on the fresh cheeses.   I will probably want to find other fresh cheese recipes to try also.   As for hard cheese–well I know I’m not ready to invest in cheese making supplies. However, I  would really like to try  the Picking cheese again.  I do love a challenge and t is just quirky enough that it intrigues me.

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