Happy Cheese Makers Since 1978

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Mooos Letter Spring '05

Milk..... What is It ??
Milk .. it all looks pretty much the same but what is really in that jug and what has happened behind the scenes on it's way to us.

Is all milk the same?

What is Ultra Pasteurized?

How will all of this affect our ability to make cheese from this milk?

What can we do to compensate for these changes?

What's new at cheesemaking.com 

As we continue our 'quest to be the best' we are constantly searching for new items
... we have recently sourced the specialty wrapping papers for rind ripened cheese
... as well as many new cultures in larger packs

Jim Wallace has also been busy picking up lots of new information to help the cheesemakers.
He recently attended the Italian Cheese seminar at the Vermont Institute for Artisan Cheese [VIAC] where he learned about the Ragusano cheese from Sicily plus many other italian cheeses. He has also just returned from the
Opportunities and Challenges Conference in Sonoma Calif. an annual event to identify new directions and technologies for small cheesemakers.

New to Catalog

Finally after all of your begging, pleading, and gnashing of teeth the 'Cheese Queen'
has seen your wisdom and now
has bottled
Pints of Calf Rennet
Rennet is now available in Pint bottles from our website now
Go To It

We are now carrying the
larger packs of Ezal culture to give you a much larger choice in developing cheeses that
have a different character.. aroma..flavor..texture.
These packs are in quantities for much larger vat process but if you are making 5-10 gallon batches
or larger we will show you how to make it work for you.

We will be supplying the following:
A straight ahead Acid producer .. Mesophilic works @ 86-102F
Gas producer .. similar to MA011 but will add Diacytyl flavor and CO2 for small hole production

Another straight Acid producer .. Thermophilic works @ 96-114F

Helveticus used w/ thermophilus in mountain style cheese.. Gruyere etc
produces gas for holes and typical 'swiss' flavor
These will all be listed online in the near future

Meet the Cheesemakers

Joe Widmer
Widmer's Cheese Cellars
producing a very traditional Brick cheese

Joe is the one
on the right
Joe is the 3rd generation of Widmers working in the same building. His grandfather built it in the 1920's, his father and uncles followed, and now Joe follows in their footsteps literally.

Oh yes ... and he still makes the same cheese his grandfather began with
... and using the same bricks .

New Book

French Cheeses

Tomoko Yamada
Yohei Maruyama
Kazuko Masui

The one thing that is true about all that we attempt to do,
is that to succeed we need a good plan.
That plan depends on our inspiration
and this book is one that can
provide that inspiration to the cheesemaker
as well as those who just plain love cheese

Cheese Recipe

The 'Grandaddy' cheese of Northern Italy

This cheese is probably one of the most famous and certainly the largest in production of all of the italian cheeses

It begins by sitting overnight to allow the cream to rise for skimming and is ready 18-24 months later as a very hard cheese of granular texture.
This cheese is most often known as the grating cheese for pasta but is actually a superb table or dessert cheese with a rich fruity flavor.

Upcoming Classes
The Spring/Summer
Workshop schedule has been set

Cheesemaking 101
April 30, 2005
June19, 2005

Ricki's Fun for all ages introductory class.. A full day of Hands-On Beginners Cheesemaking. Farmhouse Cheddar, Fromage Blanc, Creme Fraiche, Queso Blanco, Mascarpone, Whole Milk & Whey Ricottas and a Quick Mozzarella.
You will learn the basic principles of cheese making and the use and care of equipment all while making new friends who share similar interests.

Cheesemaking 201 (2 Days)
June 11-12, 2005

Jim will be teaching this extended 2 day class, and it will provide an opportunity to work with cheese that requires extended TLC!
This class will provide an opportunity to learn so much more than in a 1 day class and to cover more aspects of the process in greater detail.
This class will be an expansion of what is taught in the 1 day class and will provide plenty of time to spend on problem solving and fielding every ones questions on how to make better cheese

Cheesemaking 201 (1 Day)
July 9, 2005

This class will be taught by Jim, it is a fantastic fun class for those who want to go beyond the basics! Learn more about the concepts involved in cheese making rather than following a fixed recipe. In this one day class you will make 1 or 2 cheeses, but more importantly you will follow the process in detail to gain a deeper knowledge of what is happening and why.. with a focus on proper acid development, proper curd formation, whey removal, salting and pressing
You will also be tasting cheese so you are welcome to bring your own for comments. We will also try to spend as much time as possible in the cave to learn about post make care.

Cheese Tips for Ewe

In Making Mozzarella I seem to be forming a nice curd , good clean whey, but put the curds in the microwave and it would NOT make mozzarella that would stretch....

..Since you managed to obtain a nice firm curd, then your milk is NOT Ultra Pasteurized ... If what you mean by not making mozzarella is no stretch .. your problem is simply the variation in Microwave outputs some put out more energy than others, to resolve this either: increase your times in the MW (but do not overdo this) .. until you get the curds to stretch OR use a pan of water @ 175-180F and cut the curd ball into thin strips and immerse in this water .. taking two wooden or plastic spoons smoosh these together in a kneading like fashion until they begin to form an elastic mass at which point they should stretch Your goal either way is to get the internal temp of the curd to about 135F You were closer than you thought.

What is rennet? What does rennet do in making cheese? Can I make it myself?

Rennet is an enzyme which traditionally comes from the stomach of a young milk fed calf, lamb or goat but you are better off with commercially made rennet today to make cheese. Since it would be very difficult for you to standardize It causes the protein components in milk to form (curd) and allows the liquid components to separate and run off as whey. The milk is allowed to acidify slightly.. rennet is added .. the curds and whey are separated ... the curds are placed into forms From this basic recipe, hundreds of different cheese can be made.

Can I use skim milk in my cheeses?

..Yes, skim milk may be used in cheese making. Your cheeses will be drier and your yield will be lower. There are cheeses such as Parmesan and Farmers cheese that typically use skim milk because the increased fat levels are not desired in these types of cheeses. When using skim milk you may have to play a bit to adjust your rennet to get the required setting time called for in your recipe.


So ... Who makes cheese .. from What .. and why
here is a summation of our last questionnaire

How long have you made cheese?
About how many batches?
6 months
1 Year
10 Years +

What kind of Milk do you use?

Do you have your own Animals? and Farm ?
Yes 64% ....... No 36%

What are your favorite Cheeses?
Hard Italian

Briefly… what inspired you to make cheese?
Wanted to make my own
healthier cheese
Had an excess of Milk
I really like cheese
Fascinated by it's history
I was really curious about it


What are your goals in cheese making?
Make Quality cheese for
family and friends
Make Quality cheese to Sell
Promote Real Cheese
Having Fun


If you didn't get a chance to fill it out the first time around here it is again

How long have you made cheese?__
About how many batches?_
What kind of Milk do you use?__
Do you have your own Animals? ___
Your own Farm?___
What are your favorite Cheeses?__________________
Briefly… what inspired you to make cheese?_______
What are your goals in cheese making?_______

Simply cut and paste the questions above into an email addressed to Jim and fill in your response for us.
Your answers will help us focus our resources to best serve you.

Send us Your Photos

We are very excited about this new online Newsletter and really would like to get some input from our readers. Like everything else in the world today, things are only as good as what goes into them. So, if you are really excited about your cheese making and would like to share it with us, please send it along with any pictures you might have to either Ricki or me (Jim). Also if you can think of anything that might make this newsletter better, please let us know.


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