Jun. 2011 19

Weekend Update

The work on clearing out my garage is proceeding nicely.  Yesterday I cleared out 10 large trash bags of junk and 4 large boxes of VHS tapes.   I plan to donate the real movies to Goodwill and need to see if there is a way to recycle the plastic for the home-recorded stuff.  I moved two shelving units to the sides of the garage and emptied some book boxes into the shelves. I think it hit 101 degrees here yesterday so I kept a huge pitcher of cold water in the garage with me and managed to drink the whole thing.  I likely have at least three more sessions of work like this before we can get the CheeseWife™‘s car into the garage but the progress so far is satisfying.

Today I treated myself by driving to Burgundy Pasture Beef to pick up some local grassfed beef and chicken, then picked up six gallons of raw milk at All-Natchur_L Farm just a few miles north of Burgundy Pasture Beef’s store.  The next treat was having some Burgundy Pasture steak for lunch with some Kale and Quinoa Salad and some sweet and sour red cabbage while listening to Jane Monheit (Taking a Chance on Love CD).

On to the cheese!  I have three gallons of All-Natchur_L raw milk setting right now preparing for the rennet stage.  According to Frank Kosikowski there are eight stages in making cheese.  The Cheese Mongers Weblog has a nice description of the stages here.  The cheese I am making today is Cheddar.  I am using three packages of mesophillic bacteria from New England Cheesemaking Supply.  I will add a very small portion of vegetable rennet and a few drops of annatto coloring.  I use just enough of the coloring to get a light creamy hue to the cheese rather than enough for an orange hue.   I should be able to post a picture of the cheese curds and the newly pressed cheese tomorrow.

Update 6/20/2011:  Tried to do too much this weekend.  After cleaning garage, then zipping around shopping, replacing a bathroom drain pipe and then cooking a quick pick-up dinner of pasta and some bottled sauce I flat ran out of energy.  I had nothing left when it was time to cheddar the cheese, so I mixed some salt into the curds and put them into the cheese press.  Then I limped to bed.  Tonight I will have a look and see if the cheese will turn into anything worth aging.

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