Author Topic: New Hobby  (Read 1622 times)

Offline tubercle

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New Hobby
« on: March 20, 2010, 02:55:27 PM »
Tubercle has a new hobby...

...making cheese!


If I had known it was this easy and cheap I would have done it years ago.

Got 8 pounds of cheddar, 2 pounds of pepper jack and some sort of parmesan-something-or-other-hybrid-mutant I made up that is aging now. Waiting is the hard part. ;D

  The Tubercle household loves cheese so why not.

And it easier than making beer.
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Offline dj99

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Re: New Hobby
« Reply #1 on: March 20, 2010, 03:03:39 PM »
How easy and cheap?  How many gallons of milk does it take to make a pound of cheese?  I gots to know.
I loves to Homebrew!
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Offline tubercle

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Re: New Hobby
« Reply #2 on: March 20, 2010, 03:44:00 PM »
How easy and cheap?  How many gallons of milk does it take to make a pound of cheese?  I gots to know.


 It depends on the milk (solids and milk fat) but roughly 0.8 - 1 lb cheese per gallon. Around here store bought milk is ~ $3.29/gal. Parmesan cheese at the grocer is going for $22.00/lb :o So I can have a pound of any kind of cheese made in the world for the price of a gallon of milk plus about 50 cents for other ingredients (culture and rennet) and about 5 hours of my time. Just like beer! :D

 Aging is the hard part though. Cheddar 3 - 12 months. :) Parmesan - 12 to 24 months  ???


Just like this forum is the king for brewers, I found my wealth of info here if anyone is interested: Cheeseforum.org
Like beer forums, there are many but I found this to be the most informative. There are many places to buy ingredients - austinhomebrew.com being one.


Finally found a hobby, besides fishing, that me and the lovely and talented Ms. Tubercle can enjoy together. She considers herself a beer drinker which consist of 1/2 can of Coors light at a Christmas party once a year a "binge" but that doesn't exactly meet my definition 8)
« Last Edit: March 20, 2010, 04:07:55 PM by tubercle »
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Offline dj99

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Re: New Hobby
« Reply #3 on: March 20, 2010, 04:06:54 PM »
Thanks for the info!

In the NW, I buy milk for $2 a gallon, and store brand medium cheddar cheese for $2 a pound on sale.  Sharp cheddar costs more.  Costco parmesan (not too bad), is something like $3.00-$3.50 a pound   It would have to be a lot better than store bought to spend 5 hours making it at that exchange rate!

I've always thought about making it myself.  Please post again when you get it done, and let us know how it turns out.
I loves to Homebrew!
(in SW Washington)

Offline tygo

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Re: New Hobby
« Reply #4 on: March 20, 2010, 04:29:33 PM »
You should try your hand at DIY mustard next  ;D
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Offline tubercle

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Re: New Hobby
« Reply #5 on: March 20, 2010, 06:47:37 PM »
You should try your hand at DIY mustard next  ;D


Hmmm....
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Offline MrNate

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Re: New Hobby
« Reply #6 on: March 20, 2010, 08:20:32 PM »
Dang, that was going to be my next endeavor. How are you aging it?
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boulderbrewer

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Re: New Hobby
« Reply #7 on: March 20, 2010, 08:30:17 PM »
Get some cows, sheep or goats and it gets cheaper, free milk. ;) I love making cheese. If you use store bought milk just don't get the ultrapastuerized milk. It does not work.

We have goats that give a very high butterfat, yumm.

Offline weazletoe

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Re: New Hobby
« Reply #8 on: March 21, 2010, 05:47:12 AM »
  I keep kicking around the idea of cheese making. I guess the same way I tossed around beer making before I actually did it. Seems like a good plan for when I get to settled in Idaho. On thing I have not found on cheese making, does one have to wear pants while going about the process? :-\
A man works hard all week, so he doesn't have to wear pants all weekend.

Offline tygo

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Re: New Hobby
« Reply #9 on: March 21, 2010, 06:15:21 AM »
You should try your hand at DIY mustard next  ;D
Hmmm....

Be careful with this one tubercle.  Might want to check out this thread first:  http://www.homebrewersassociation.org/forum/index.php?topic=1675.0
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Offline capozzoli

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Re: New Hobby
« Reply #10 on: March 21, 2010, 07:06:37 AM »
I would love to see some pics.

Havent tried it myself but love the idea.

So ya been making curds?
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Offline tubercle

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Re: New Hobby
« Reply #11 on: March 21, 2010, 05:05:56 PM »
Dang, that was going to be my next endeavor. How are you aging it?


 From what I understand so far, most should be aged 50-55f with some type of humidity control, usually in the 85% range. I have waxed mine so the humidity part is not in play. That's mainly for the un-waxed/un-vacuum packaged types. There are as many types and styles of cheese as beer! And about as many methods :D

 Right now I got them in my converted keg fridge set @ 50f (Stout & old brown on tap so I'm good). I found most use a dorm fridge w/thermo controls and a bowl of water.

  There is a lot of beer equipment, pots and fridges and such, that cross over with cheese I couldn't resist. So far I have zero investment other than ingredients and a press I bought for $70.00. After I got the press and looked at it I could have made it in 30 minutes for $5.00 :( Again, just like the beer hobby :D


 I read that mustard thing - that's funny.
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Offline tubercle

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Re: New Hobby
« Reply #12 on: March 21, 2010, 05:37:10 PM »
Get some cows, sheep or goats and it gets cheaper, free milk. ;) I love making cheese. If you use store bought milk just don't get the ultrapastuerized milk. It does not work.

We have goats that give a very high butterfat, yumm.

 Been using store bought 2% but have just found a place about 15 min down the road that sells "raw" cow milk and goat milk. That's next. Tried the first batch of cheddar I made, aged about 1 month - couldn't wait any longer :P - and it tasted great but a little dryer and crumbly than I expected. Who cares, it was cheese and it was good. ;D
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boulderbrewer

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Re: New Hobby
« Reply #13 on: March 22, 2010, 06:03:41 AM »
Did you get a pressure guage for your cheese press. My first ones turned out crumbly like that. I'm guessing it is from over pressing.

Offline tubercle

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Re: New Hobby
« Reply #14 on: March 22, 2010, 06:23:26 AM »
Did you get a pressure guage for your cheese press. My first ones turned out crumbly like that. I'm guessing it is from over pressing.

 I got one of these: http://schmidling.com/press.htm

 It has a spring that is supposed to be 50 lb bottomed out and different pressures depending on the number of turns. I haven't tested it on a scale to verify but I need to. I have found several good plans for lever types and I think I will build one of them. I've got enough scrap material laying around. I believe they would be more repeatable if not more accurate. Once I figure out the "cooking" process I think repeatably in the pressing part - time and pressure - will take it the next level.
Sweet Caroline where the Sun rises over the deep blue sea and sets somewhere beyond Tennessee