Monday, April 21, 2008

Cheese!

I'm in the midst of major cheese making and it is just dandy fun! I have a cheese press coming today or tomorrow which should allow me to press my cheese much easier and without having to wash and sanitize bricks from the yard. I'm hoping to have some nice cheese for Meridies' Thirtieth Year Celebration this August. There will definitely be fresh mozzerella, but I want a few hard cheeses as well. My next purchase will be a dorm size refrigerator, which is recommended by Ricki Carroll, author of Home Cheese Making.

While reading through this book I found something I didn't know (ok, I'm finding LOTS of things I didn't know about cheese, but this one I found particularly interesting.) Some cheeses, such as Gouda and Colby, are "washed-cured" cheeses in that during the curding process the whey is drained off and water replaces it to continue with the curding. This "washes" the lactose from the curd and lowers the acidity level. It's done to give the cheese a smooth texture and mild flavor. This led me to wonder if washed-curd cheeses are easier for people who are lactose intolerant to digest than other whey-curd cheeses. I will have to ask Lady Greet if she has had any experience.

I do have some lovely Gouda that I purchased in my fridge which is supposedly ripened for 25 or more years. It's quite delightful! I'm not sure I'm patient enough to wait 25 years for a wheel of cheese. It's going to be hard enough waiting the 3-12 months that many of the cheeses I want to make.

1 comment:

Greet said...

Hmm - perhaps that is one reason why harder cheeses don't give me any trouble. Though I had attributed it to the enzymes digesting all the lactose, which could be happening, too. ~Greet