Jack in January – January 7th, 2018

Two and a half weeks ago my cheese making buddy Mo’ and I made Jack and Cheddar, but she kept all of the cheese so I don’t have it here to see it develop.  I’m sure I’ll get to taste it but I like watching and caring for the cheese as it develops.  Anyway, I decided I should remake the Jack right away and so how the recipe turns out.

January 7th –

Ingredients for Jack:
3 gallons whole milk
3/8 tsp MM100 – 1/8 tsp per gallon – other Mesophilic cultures can be used
3/4 tsp Rennet – 1/4 tsp per gallon
1/4 cup Distilled Water


Heat to 89
Add Culture, hold for 45 mins
Add Rennet
Hold for 40 mins
Rest for 10 mins.
Stir and heat to 100 for 30-40mins
hold at 100 for 30mins while stirring
hold for 30 mins without stirring
Drain whey and place into mold
Flip after 15 mins
Flip after 30 mins.
Press for 12 hrs at 30lbs
Brine for 6 hrs.
age as needed, 60 days if using raw milk.  I would recommend 4-6 months, but you may want to age for a year or more to develop flavor.



End of the Year Cheese – December 26, 2017

Today we made a 10 gallon batch of Cheddar and a 3 gallon batch of Jack. I so often make

Cheese wheels with Mo'
Cheddar and Jack wheels

cheddar that I had forgotten how easy Jack is to make.  The Jack recipe takes about half the time and we tossed the curds into the mold and pressed for a few hours and it was done. The Cheddar by comparison took another 4 hours to complete.  We did get 11 lbs. of cheddar from 10 gallons of milk  and 3 lbs. of Jack from the 3 gallon batch.  We added 10 drops of annato per gallon of milk to the cheddar to give it a nice yellow look.  The Jack came out fairly white, but this is raw milk and the cheese will always finish darker than with grocery store milk. The only flaw was that the cheddar seemed to finish a bit dry and some was even cracking a bit.  I probably over-cooked in the later stages of getting the curd to shrink. It will be something to look at in 60 days as the cheddar wheels begin to finish.

Cheddar Curds – October 8th, 2017


I always seem to come back to Cheddar Curds and although I haven’t posted in a while I am still making cheese. The problem usually comes down to time, I never have enough.

So as a time saving measure,  I had a friend of mine create a curd knife to try to cut the curd quicker.  It had limited success as it was a little bit big to turn well in the pot.

My last batch was a 14 lbs batch.  You can see it in the pictures before it I milled the curd.

Curd Knife
Curd Knife

Emmental – 11.6.2016

Cheese makers apprenticeAnother weekend with fresh milk from R Patch of Heaven! This dairy has great milk and it is making great cheese. So this week I decided to make Swiss Cheese. I haven’t made it in a while and felt it was time. I also picked up a new book, The Cheesemaker’s Apprentice and it contained a recipe for Emmental, which is the cheese American’s think of when we think of Swiss.

emmental2The Swiss recipe I have used in the past, the baby Swiss recipe from Cheesemaking.com calls for an 1/8 tsp of Propionic Shermanii and this new recipe calls for 1 tsp for 2 gallons of milk. This seemed a bit too much so I cut it in half to 1/2 tsp per pot. Each pot had a little over 3 gallons of milk.

In any case, I end up with  a lot of curd, with the nearly 7 gallons of milk. Now that the cheese has come out of the brine and dried for a couple hours it weighs 7 lbs. 8.5 oz.

I am excited to see how a wheel of 7 lbs. reacts when it starts to swell. It will also be interesting to see how this recipe tastes. I added a 1/8 tsp of Alp-D culture to supplement the Thermophilic TA061 culture I have used singly in the past. Follow the complete recipe on the recipes page.

New Dairy – R Patch of Heaven – More Great Cheese

Cheddar Curds Pressing
Cheddar Curds Pressing

There are people who will tell you that cheese can be made from any milk; Goat, Sheep, Cow, Grocery, Pasteurized, Organic or Raw. This is correct, however the milk I have been having great success lately is fresh, raw cow’s milk.  Today’s milk came from a great dairy just outside Eaton, CO. R Patch of Heaven is a organic raw milk dairy where you can get great milk for cheese. John and Joy, from R Patch of Heaven have been dairy farmers for most of their lives and know what good milk is all about. I made Cheddar curds in two batches, one with a little Annatto and one without. It made for some pretty cool looking cheese. Best of all it tasted great.  So if you need milk for every day or for a project, give Patch of Heaven a call.

Spressa – 90 days Without Supervision

This is what happens if you ignore a cheese.
This is what happens if you ignore a cheese.

In July I was making a lot of cheese and quite busy as well, so when a wheel starting to get out of control I decided to let it go.   Another cheese maker recently told me that they were letting a lot of their cheese go natural for the aging process and cleaning it up when it was time to eat it. So this was my chance to take a chance. The recipe calls for several months of aging up to a year. So today I pulled the wheel out after 90 days of aging and cleaned it up a little bit and wanted to share a picture.  I’m going to let it go for a while longer and then we will try it. I’ll let you know how it tastes.

Epic Cheese Weekend – October 2, 2016

Fresh Burrata cheese
Fresh Burrata cheese

This weekend, I made two new cheese and one old favorite. New for the year were Romano and Burrata. I also stayed up late to make Cheddar after the Bronco game. For those who have followed the Cheddar recipe before, you know that particular recipe takes 8 hours.

Wheel of Romano drying.

I have also decided that I should redesign the blog and put Recipes and Makes directions in a separate area and save the homepage for shorter posts pointing to the current recipe. I’m hoping this will make posting easier for me. It should also make things easy to find. The homepage is sort of a mess at this point.

Garlic Montasio – September 5th, 2016

Montasio is a cheese that has been around since the 13th century. It was traditionally made by monks living in the Moggio abbey, located at the top of the Carnic Alps. My recipe comes from Kent Walker Cheese in  Little Rock, AR. I first made this recipe more than a year ago, when I was a real newbie and had a hard time making a decent cheese. Today’s make came out perfectly, at least from the first reviews. Lets take a look at the recipe.

Original Ingredients List :
Cow Milk
2:1 Thermo/Meso Culture
Garlic Cloves
Actual Ingredients List :
2 Gallon non-homogenized, 1 Gallon grocery store Cow Milk
1/16 tsp per gallon Mesophilic type II = 3/16 tsp
1/16 tsp per gallon TA61 Thermophilic  = 3/16 tsp
1 tsp Rennet
3 tsp minced store bought garlic
  • Heat milk to 70° add culture
  • Let culture set for 2-5 mins before mixing, mix in up and down motion, don’t stir.
  • Continue heating – Heat to 88°  should take 30-45 minutes.
  • Add rennet 1 tsp for the 3 gallons
  • Let rest for 60-75 mins,  with 1 gallon of grocery milk we waited 75 mins.
  • Cut curd to 1/4″
  • Heat to 102° stir for an hour,  heating took a little over 30 mins and stirred for 30 minutes more
  • Heat a pot of distilled water to 140°
  • Drain off 1/3 of the whey
  • Scald curd to 110° by adding heated water
  • Stir for 10 additional mins at 110°
  • Drain off most of the whey, its ok if there is a little left in the pot
  • Mix in the garlic breaking up the curds as you go to get a good mix
  • This will cause additional whey to be expelled, drain it off
  • Press curds into a mold
  • Press over night. If 8 lbs wheel press at 65lbs
  • Start with 8-10 lbs for first half hour
  • Double the weight for next hour, flip
  • We got up to 42 lbs. and left overnight
  • Soak in brine for 12-24 hours
  • We went for 15-16, it was a long day
  • Age 2-36 months
  • Coat in olive oil as needed to prevent mold

Update: Oct 1,2016 – I cut the wheel in half and Vacuum Sealed after testing it. The cheese had very little flavor but a great texture and creaminess to it. It might need more garlic next time or it might just need time. We will see.

Welcome to the Fair, July 27th-August 1st

It has been a great week at the Weld County fair making cheese for everyone to try.  Our booth was set up as a demonstration of what cheeses you can make at home.

fair booth
fair booth

The fair board is evaluating if Cheese should be a competition sport.  We had lots of interest in taking classes and making cheese.

This week we made:

Wednesday: Cheddar Curds – Cow Milk
Thursday: Asiago Pepato – Cow Milk
Friday: Manchago – Sheep Milk
Saturday: Ibores – Goat Milk
Sunday: Gruyere – Cow Milk

This week we ate:

  • Ibores – Goat
  • Chevre – Goat
  • Manchego – Sheep
  • Cheddar – Cow
  • Belper Knolle – Cow
  • Feta – Cow