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Home Brew Forums > Food and Beverage > Cheese Making Forum > Noob Question
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Old 01-10-2011, 07:43 PM   #1
rengelma
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I've never made cheese before but I was at a friends house the other day and he had gotten some European cheese from his in laws for the holidays. Long story short I found some mold on the inside of the cheese and was wondering if I could use that to make my own cheese (kind of like harvesting yeast out of the fermenter.) So I took some of this mold home and added it to about 1/4 cup of milk which promptly turned in to a solidish mess. Now I'm wondering if there is any practical way to turn this into a real cheese? I was thinking about just adding this stuff to a gallon of milk from the store just to see what I happens but then I thought I should try and ask for help. Any thoughts? do I need anything else besides milk and my new found source of bacteria?

Thanks!

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Old 01-10-2011, 08:21 PM   #2
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I've only made cheese once, but there is no bacteria or fungus involved. Citric acid, vegetable rennet, calcium chloride, and milk.

Mold is not the producer of cheese. it's just something that forms on old cheese.

edit: I've been told that some cheese do use bacteria. the easy mozzarella that I made did not.

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Old 01-10-2011, 08:41 PM   #3
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Generally, the "mold" comes later in cheese making.

First, you make the cheese using some cultures and then rennet. The culture causes the pH changes in the cheese. These culture are bacteria cultures. These cultures "ripen" the cheese.

I use mostly mesophilic cultures, like Lactococcus lactis subsp. lactis & cremoris, for many of the cheeses. Then, after the pH drops (or a period of time), you add the rennet. The curds are then processed (usually gently cooked) and then the cheese is pressed. It's during aging that any mold cultures for cheeses like stilton or bleu cheeses are added.

So in short, you can't make cheese with the mold you find from one. But you can use that mold for the secondary culture if it's still good and viable.

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Old 01-12-2011, 01:31 PM   #4
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Ok so maybe I don't know what I have here... it wasn't a blue cheese but I'm just proving my ignorance of the cheese making process. SO maybe this stuff wasn't mold? it looked like dried yeast on the inside of the cheese. I took this stuff home and thinking that I could "culture" something from one cheese to another I added it to some milk and let it sit out on the counter for a day. My little experiment did manage to solidify (curdle?), and now I don't know what to do with it.

Is that even a viable technique for making cheese?

Should I just forget about this experiment or is there something I can salvage out of this? If so, what would be the next step?

I've read about some of these cheese making methods where the milk is heated to pasteurize it... If I just buy milk at the grocery story its already pasteurized why would I repeat this step?

I'm so lost.

Thanks!

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Old 01-12-2011, 02:14 PM   #5
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I don't think you have viable cheese there. You have moldy/infected milk.

As I mentioned, you need some specific cultures to make the pH changes to the milk, then you need rennet (unless you're doing a soft cheese like cottage cheese) and then you separate the curds and whey. THEN you may add secondary cultures, after the cheese is pressed and ready for the secondary culture.

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Old 01-14-2011, 04:01 AM   #6
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Ok just so we're clear... now that I'm a little bit smarter on cheese. I'm pretty sure I didn't get mold... the dried stuff was from the inside of a regular hard cheese (shouldn't have mold I think). But it's not likely that it was productive bacteria cultures? or if it was, my poor handling of this stuff probably wasn't sanitary enough to produce a viable culture?

Thanks for being patient with me... I was overly optimistic about the thought of making cheese with out any real knowledge. One other question... is my logic right that it would be possible to harvest a culture from a block of cheese?

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Old 01-29-2011, 02:20 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rengelma
Ok just so we're clear... now that I'm a little bit smarter on cheese. I'm pretty sure I didn't get mold... the dried stuff was from the inside of a regular hard cheese (shouldn't have mold I think). But it's not likely that it was productive bacteria cultures? or if it was, my poor handling of this stuff probably wasn't sanitary enough to produce a viable culture?

Thanks for being patient with me... I was overly optimistic about the thought of making cheese with out any real knowledge. One other question... is my logic right that it would be possible to harvest a culture from a block of cheese?
Here is a simple flavoured cheese u can make at home with no cultures or rennit put 1liter of milk in a saucepan and heat to just before boiling then add 1 chopped clove of garlic some chives and finely chopped chile then add the juice of 1lemon and in an instant watch the milk turn, then strain through muslin and weigh it down to press out the rest of the whey and that's it .by the way u can add any flavours to this
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