Recipes and techniques for hard cheese.


Postby Rik vonTrense » Fri May 05, 2006 7:46 am


There are two ways of making cheddar the Traditional way where the curd is cut into strips to drain the whey and then reduced and turned
and this is the actual cheddaring process and takes about three hours.

There is a quicker way call Stirred Curd Cheddar and this is the one we shall use.

Annetto is the only colouring allowed for cheese and the addition of this yellow dye will make cheese from yellow cheddar to red Leicester.

I shall put the timing in each section as you go so you know what time to allow overall for the make. This the timing added up as you go to make a total time for the make which is 4 hours to pressing.


45 minutes. RIPENING.

90F. 2 Gallons Milk. Cheese starter culture.

Warm 2 gallons of milk to 90F and add starter culture (can be youghurt and buttermilk or MA400) stir thoroughly and cover
and leave at 90F for 45 mins.


add cheese colouring at this point and stir well.
Stir in short teaspoon of rennet in cool water and make sure it is well mixed.

1 hour 30 minutes

Let the milk set at 90F for 90 minutes until a clean break is achieved.

1 hour 45 minutes. CUTTING THE CURD

Cut the curd into quarter inch cubes lifting the big ones from the bottom and cutting them and leave to rest for 15 minutes.

Stir the curds very gently�..remember the French say �New curds should be handled like a new bride��(what ever that means) you do not want to break the curds through overstirring neither do you want the curds to matt together through understirring.

2 hours 15 minutes COOKING THE CURDS

Over the next 30 minutes raise the temperature of the curds to 100F
Do not raise it more that 2 degrees every five minutes and keep the curds gently stirred to keep uniform temperature.

2 Hours 45 minutes

Hold the temperature at 100Ffor an additional 30 mins stirring occasionally to prevent matting.

2 hours 50 mins. DRAINING

Drain the whey from the curds keeping it if you want to make ricotta
Do this by letting the curds settle to the bottom and then pour off most of the whey. Pour the curds into a large colander or remove as much whey as possible from your curd bucket. Do not allow the curds to matt just stir them gently with your hand.

3 hours. SALTING.

Add two teaspoons of sea salt and mix into the curds. Do no sqeeze
the curds just turn them over.

4 hours STIRRING

Still at 100F gently stir the curds with your hand every five minutes to avoid them matting keep the curds at 100F by a water jacket.

1 day 6 hours PRESSING.

Line a two pound cheese mould with a cheesecloth and place in the curds. Cover and place the follower on top and press the cheese at
15 lbs for 10 minutes.

Invert the cheese mould and press at 30 lbs for 10 minutes.
Invert and press for 40lbs for 2 hours.
Invert and press at 50lbs for 24 hours.


Remove the cheese from the press and gently peel off the cheesecloth. Place the cheese on a cheese mat and turn the cheese several times a day for several days until the surface of the cheese is dry to the touch .

This can take from two to five days depending on the humidity of your kitchen.

Once the cheese is dry it can be waxed.


45/55F 85% RH.

The cheese should be stored at 45/55F for two to six months it is wise practice to continue to invert the cheese every so often to maintain a balance .

Variations can be Sage. Caraway. Jalapeno. Etc.
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Postby jenny_haddow » Fri May 05, 2006 8:26 am

Thanks for posting that Rik. I've printed off a copy and will prepare a free day soon to give it a go.


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Postby Oddley » Fri May 05, 2006 9:07 am

Thanks for the recipe Rik.

When I was a boy I had quite a few jobs, one of them was working as a delivery boy for a deli type place. I rode one of those old butchers bikes with the cage on the front, a right rickety old thing.

I remember we used to have delivered what seemed to me then, enormous wheels of cheddar cheese about 100 cwt covered in wax impregnated cheese cloth.

Is there any value in leaving the cheese cloth on and then painting with wax?

My mob eat loads of baby bel cheese, I know! anyway could the wax covering be reused.

Is it vital to cover cheddar type cheese with wax, or can it be left to form a crust?
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Postby Rik vonTrense » Fri May 05, 2006 9:53 am

First off the wax can be used over and over again. When you take it off all you do is wash it in warm water to remove the cheese and then back into the melting pot when it is dry.

It is only there to protect your cheese from creepy crawlies and rodents that like a bit of cheddar so it depends where you store them.

The cloth that's used to be on an 80lbs cheddar is lard and a bandage so if you want to you can do this to your little cheeses.

Rumage around and find an old pillow case white preferably and boil it and dry it.

Cut out two circles for the ends of your cheese and a strip wide enough and long enough to cover the sides of the cheese.

Starting with the top ...paint it with melted lard and stick the cap on making sure it adheres to the sides. then do the bottom.

When this is dry start on the sides paint them and stick the bandage on as you go and when you get all the way round put a couple of tacking stiches in it to keep it on.

Then give it another coat of melted lard and it will keep for a couple of years.

You can also treat the rind for dry rinding as it is termed...bit of a misnomer really.

You can once a week wipe the outside with a rag dipped in wine or cider
until a nice rind had formed if you get any nasty mold growing jkust wipe it off with a vinegar rag.

Hey Presto.
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Postby Oddley » Fri May 05, 2006 11:52 am

Cheers Rik.
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