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The Cheesemaking Workshop Experience

February 7, 2013

Quite awhile ago I mentioned that I was going to tell you about my Cheesemaking Workshop that I took with my daughter back in October.  Sarah and I were very excited to attend the Cheesemaking 101 with Ricki Carroll because it was in a food area we were not that familiar with.   I thought that I would come back with some awesome techniques, stories and of course cheese.

Unfortunately, I don’t have much to share technique or cheese wise. We did get a nice lunch out of it and it was very interesting to see Ricki Carroll’s home, a very cool looking Victorian in Deerfield, Massachusetts.

If you are looking to learn how to make cheese, I would recommend checking out her website which has a wealth of information as well as cheese making kits that you can make right in your own kitchen.

Fortunately, Sarah and I had Sunday to be together before we had to head home. We went to this great little town, Northhampton,  had an awesome shopping experience at 25 Central that was part of a mini-mall and a great lunch at the Haymarket Cafe.  The town was very walkable, quaint and great to explore, so the trip was not totally in vain.

Below are a few pictures from the class.  In groups, we made farmhouse cheddar, and watched Ricki make mozzarella, ricotta, queso blanco, mascarpone, fromage blanc, creme fraiche and yogurt.

All instructions are available on the Cheesemaking Website for this cheese as well as lots of others.

the milk heated to 90 degrees, starter culture added, stirred and left at a steady temperature for 45 minutes:

Cheese Class 001

rennet is added and stirred a special way:

Cheese Class 002

the container is covered and left undisturbed for 45 minutes:

Cheese Class 003

curds are cut:

Cheese Class 004

Cheese Class 005

this is a picture of the curds after having been drained in cheesecloth that has been hung over the pot:

Cheese Class 006

breaking up the curds and adding the salt:

Cheese Class 007

the next series of shots are of the cheese being molded in the cheese press:

Cheese Class 008

Cheese Class 009

Cheese Class 010

Cheese Class 011

Cheese Class 012

you keep on putting it back in the press until it’s pretty firm, we did it twice:

Cheese Class 014

Cheese Class 015

Cheese Class 016

Cheese Class 017

I have since been to an awesome class with my daughter at the end of January and will be happily talking about that one.  We both realize now how important it is to find out  exactly what  you will be doing in a food workshop or class.  Find out whether it is completely hands on or is it mostly lecture, whether you will be making individual food stuff your self rather than in a group and what exactly will you be taking home with you.   Otherwise you will be sorely disappointed as we were.

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