My future as a cheese-maker

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My future as a cheese-maker with my own goat’s milk currently seems in doubt. The last two batches of cheese I have made have not turned out well.

Last week I made some feta cheese. The texture was great, it looked good and I salted it and left it to age slightly. It tasted horrid. It had an unpleasant ‘goaty’ taste – my heart was just a little bit broken. I think some of the milk was too old. It took me maybe a week to save up enough milk and I thought that would be OK, but apparently it wasn’t.

Anyway, this evening I decided to try some mozzarella. I have made mozzarella successfully quite a few times before – my mozzarella isn’t brilliant, but it is edible and actually pretty tasty. I have never really messed it up.

The milk was fresh, from Sunday and Monday, and it tasted good. I started to make the cheese. The curds were unusually soft but it still came together and I made a soft ball. Then I popped it in the microwave for its first zap (part of the stretching processes I think) and instead of more whey coming out and leaving the cheese intact, the whole thing had just dissolved into a goo. I don’t know what I did wrong. I made half the batch I usually make so maybe it got too hot in the microwave? Maybe raw goat’s milk acts differently to cow’s milk?

All I can say is I am feeling pretty despondent.

Don’t worry though, nothing got wasted, well nearly nothing got wasted. The dogs thought the rubbish feta was actually quite nice, but then they like eating poo so their opinion on culinary matters doesn’t count. I took the whey and failed mozzarella goo-fluid thing to the pigs this evening. I poured it into their feed bowl and forgot that it has a hole in it. Some drained out, but one pig managed to gobble quite a bit,  the other one just chased me round with the glass bowl ….nearly time for sausages and bacon.

Here’s one of my gladioli coming out – knowing my luck all the blooms will probably just fall off …..

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N.B. On today’s swim Alfie and I used our goggles and put our heads under water while swimming …. bizarrely I do this all the time when in a pool, but never in the sea. We looked very professional with our goggles on in the sea ….. possibly not so much when I was walking along the path fully dressed with them on.

12 responses to “My future as a cheese-maker

  1. Hi Claire, I am in England for a while and would like to come up and see all the changes you have made at St Margaret’s House. I have been following your smallholdingdreams and you seem to be extremely busy. My mobile number is 07455091821.
    So if you would like a chat I would love to hear from you.
    If you are wondering who I am, I’m Mary Collins’ daughter your Mum was my second cousin and your uncle Dave keeps in touch with me in Australia. I stayed with your grandparents at St Margaret’s House when I had my first baby Tamara, I have a picture of you and Allison in the bath together with Tam.
    Really hope I can see you this time while I’m over from Australia.
    Jenny Kuech

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