- 12l milk
- Lactoferm PG cheese culture: 1.2 gr
- Calcium chloride (CaCl2) : 2.5-3ml
- Rennet: 1ml (strength 710 - 739 IMCU/ml)
- Salt solution 20% (for salting)***
- Solution for washing (cleaning the cheese with a wet cloth during ripening)
Recipe(The video has subtitles in several languages)
- Before starting, we should disinfect all surfaces and dishes that may come into contact with milk.
- Determine whether milk is suitable for making cheese. It has to go through the bactericidal phase (cold milk from the previous day usually works). If you have a PH meter, the PH level of milk should not be outside the PH 6.55–6.75 range (which is very rare).
- Pasteurize milk: heat it to 65 °C and keep it at this temperature for 30 minutes. Can heat up to 70 °C and hold for 15 minutes.
- Quickly cool the milk, for example, in a cold bath to 30 °C (it could take 15 minutes), or heat the already pasteurized milk.
- Add calcium chloride (2.5-3ml) and stir it into the milk within 30-60 seconds. Calcium chloride must be diluted with 50ml of clean water before adding to milk first.**
- Add Lactoferm PG (1.2gr.) cheese culture.
- Wait 5 minutes, stir the cheese culture into the milk and leave it for 1 hour.
- Add rennet (1ml) into milk and stir within 60 seconds. Rennet must be diluted with 50ml of pure water first.**
- After adding a rennet, start the timer to determine the flocculation point. Generally, the flocculation point for most of the cheeses is 3. That means that if the milk has thickened (forms a curd) within 12 minutes, you can move on to the next stage only after 36 minutes (12x3 = 36 minutes).
- Cut the curd into 0.5-1cm cubes, approximately, and leave for 5 minutes
- After 5 minutes, stir slowly and leave for another 5 minutes.
- Mix again and chop finer with a whisk.
- Heat up to 42C within 40 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes.
- When the temperature has reached 42C, continue to stir continuously for another 30 minutes.
- Drain the whey and form a homogeneous mass from the cheese mass, which can be pouring the cheese into a mold and leaving it in the warm place for 30 minutes.
- Press under its own weight for 20-30 minutes.
- Put under the press with a cheesecloth for 5 hours, turning it around from time to time, increasing the weight. Then leave the cheese overnight in the form or under the same press. (Total pressing time ~19 hours).
- The salting time is 5 hours per 1 kg of cheese in a 20% salt solution.***
- After salting, the cheese should be dried with paper towels and left for 6 hours at room temperature and put in the refrigerator at 10-12C for 1 week.
- After a week, wash the surface of the cheese 1-2 times a day with a cloth soaked in balsam or any other solution and after with Brevibacterium Linens solution.**** Black balsam though disinfects the surface of the cheese and prevents the growth of mold, and makes the surface of the cheese darker. Here is the 2 month aged cheese where it was used Riga black balsam solution.
- If the humidity in the refrigerator is not high enough, the cheese cracks. To avoid it, cheese can be covered with the same wet cloth. The cheese will be ready in 2 months. However, it is recommended to ripen it for 3-6 month.
* Freshly milked milk has bactericidal properties for a few hours, during the so-called bactericidal phase, when bacteria suppress reproduction. Cooling the milk prolongs the bactericidal phase. If the milk is obtained in strict compliance with sanitary regulations and rapidly cooled to +40 °C, the duration of the bactericidal phase is 24 hours and more. At the same temperature bactericidal phase period, impure milk has at least two to three times shorter temperature. The duration of the unrefrigerated milk phase is, on average, 2 hours.
** The time of milk coagulation (thickening) depends on the quantity of calcium chloride and rennet. It can be adjusted for best coagulation time, which should ideally be 12 minutes. For instance, if the first time your milk has thickened after 20 minutes, then increase the next dose of enzyme.
*** During pressing, the cheese releases whey and also increases the level of acidity, which is an important regulatory process in bacteria. If you slightly increase this pressing time, then it will be easier to melt the cheese. Such cheese is perfect for hot buns or in pizza making. If the pressing time is too long, it will lose its elasticity and become fragile.
**** The salt solution can be prepared as follows: 1 liter of whey, 180 grams of salt (do not use iodized salt), 5–10 drops of calcium chloride, and 1 teaspoon vinegar It is recommended to purchase a hydrometer to determine the salt concentration in the solution, because after each salting, it returns the salt to the cheese