Third Cheese Making Course of April 2013 with John and Emma

Stu showing John and Emma the effect of adding annatto for our Tasty Yorkshrie make which is a cross between a Double Gloucester/Cheddar/Wensleydale

Stu showing John and Emma the effect of adding annatto for our Tasty Yorkshire make which is a cross between a Double Gloucester/Cheddar/Wensleydale

Monday was a busy day, what with making a small vat of Tasty Yorkshire and running  a cheese making class.

As usual, we ripened the milk for about an hour and a quarter at 30 oC whilst Stu did the same in the small vat, only he added annatto.

Emma and John stirring their vats after cutting

Emma and John stirring their vats after cutting

Annatto is a naturally intense dye which can range in colour from bright yellow to deep orange and is derived from the seed or extract from the achiote tree, which is native to Latin and South America.  It is used to colour cheese and can also be found in Coloured Cheddar, Double Gloucester and Red Leicester.

After ripening, we renneted and covered John and Emma’s small vats whilst they popped into Hawes to sample the delights of the town.

After renneting, we had a long discussion about how the size of the cut can vary the type of cheese you are making.  We initially cut into 2″ cubes, left the curd for 5 minutes and very, very gently stirred it with our hands as the surface temperature was quite cool,

Emma and John showing off their blocks of curd

Emma and John showing off their final curd prior to potting up

compared to that around the sides.  Stirring does reduce the size of the cubes but not too much and it still always amazes me that you can start off with large cubes that shrivel to the size of coffee beans.

Emma and John showing off their respective blocks of curd

Emma and John showing off their respective blocks of curd

We then stirred for about two hours and took the whey off.  Emma’s vat was running slightly faster than John’s so she was the first to form a block with her curd. John followed shortly afterwards and we cut into cubes, added salt and milled.

We will be sending John and Emma their two cheeses next week after giving them a head start maturing.  It was a pleasure to have them with us and we both wish them well in their home cheese making endeavours.

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