Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Cheesy Plans

Suzanne McMinn had a post today about making cheese.  She made farmhouse cheddar (which is pressed and aged), but she helpfully posted a bunch of pictures of her process.  I got one thing to say.  My curds look nothing like her curds.  Her curds are robust cubes of wonderfullness that stand firm on her slotted spoon.  My curds are weak, spineless blobs compared to hers. To misappropriate a term, my curds are milquetoast!

Check her post out: The Making of Farmhouse Cheddar

So here I am, working from home, trying to concentrate on some boring thing, being overwhelmed by how great her cheese curds look.  I've made mozzarella twice now, and although I wouldn't call it them failures (I did get something that tasted like mozzarella cheese after all), I wouldn't call them successful either. The first try slumped into flat goo overnight, and the second try, while harder than the first, are now flat little balls wrapped in saran wrap, but still expelling whey.  Here's a shot of my first and second attempts.  I'm really glad I didn't proudly post pictures of my weak-ass curds!

I made pizza last night, and the texture and meltiness of the cheese (2nd try) was just right.  The flavor leaves a bit to be desired, but then again - I would never use fresh mozzarella cheese for pizza. This is an exception.  There's not enough flavor.  I have some ideas about what I did wrong, but until I try some more times, I just won't know.

So I hatched an idiotic plan that only works because of the 1-1/2 hours of driving I saved by working from home.  The plan involves driving a little under 2 hours (1 hour there and 1 hour back), to pick up some fresh, raw milk at a farm store south of here (at least that's how long google maps says it will take).  Google maps is not always right.

I love exploring.  I was going to check out the farm and store anyway, sometime - why not today?  If the stars align and everything goes as planned, I'll have a 3rd attempt at mozzarella cheese later tonight, this time with raw milk!


  1. Good luck with all of that!! You are a determined creature! Maybe outside temp/humidity affect the outcome..it does with some things. Just looking for a little out here. :o) I just keep skipping around the net when I have questions like this and a lot of times, I find out some read good 'other' stuff in the process.. We'll be waiting for the next cheese newsflash!

  2. Hey Karen Sue - it was the milk! What a difference different milk made! I did watch a few youtube videos today about how to make this cheese. They did help.

  3. That's great, Jordan! You saved me some hassles, since I planned on using the same milk!