Another 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.
The 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.
I started the weekend with 10 gallons of milk, yesterday I made a small batch of Swiss. Today, I used the rest to make even more Swiss and something new called Spessa.
Spressa is an Italian cheese that dates back to 1249 AD. It is fairly simple as its ingredients are milk, culture and rennet. Spressa can be made with Thermophic culture, 3% yogurt or even day old whey.
The basics of the recipe are heat the milk to 70, add culture, continue heat to 95. At 95 add rennet. Wait for clean break and Quickly cut curd to rice size pieces. Quickly stir curds and heat slowly to 108 (3 minutes per degree). Let the curds fully ripen, that is they will shrink try to stick together. Press for 12 hours. Brine in 20% solution. Age for a 2-12 months wipe with brine as needed.
-Heat to 84
-Add Culture, rehydrate for 5 mins, mix for 1minute.
-Set for 45 mins at 84 – ph 6.07
-Add Rennet – mix for 2 mins – ph 6.13
-Set for 45 mins at 84
-Wait for clean break
-Cut 3/8 in cuts
-Rest for 5 mins
-Stir for 5 mins
-Rest for 5 more mins
-Remove 1/3 of the whey
-Replace with 130 water over 5 mins to bring the whey up to 95 while stirring
-Then just stir for 5 mins
-Add more hot water to bring up to 102 over 5-10 mins.
-Cook at 102 for 30-40 mins(I did 35 mins) – ph 6.28
-Drain whey down to 1 inch above curd
-I add a dinner plate on top of curd
-Add a 1/3, water filled, milk jug to weigh it down and begin press. for 15 mins
-Then press curds into a mold – iI used their own weight for 15 mins
-Flip curd use 10 lbs for 30 mins, Flip curd again use 10 lbs for 30 mins
-Flip curd use 20 lbs for total time of 5 hours
-Then rest the curd in the mold with no weight.
The best part of Swiss is the aging process. 2 weeks cold age in the cheese cave. 3 weeks warm age at room temp. anywhere from 68-80, at this point I wax it for 9 days to get the best bulge and eye development. Un-wax, wash well with brine and eat! Or seal-a-meal it and age as desired. The period of warm aging is the most time consuming. It will require that you wash with brine every day, you can skip a day but it get messy.
Its a new year, let’s make a new cheese. I decided to make a 3 gallon recipe, so once again I ran out to Cozy Cow to grab 2 gallons of cream top milk and 1 gallon of sheeps milk for our cheese. It came out great and I have been eating it since March and it keeps getting better.