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List of ingredients for Home-made Caerphilly cheese

* 5 Litres, full Fat Milk
* 5 ml liquid starter or a little DVI (an aspirin sized heap)
* 1.5 ml Rennet
* Salt for Dry salting:
* *Dry salting, 1.5% per weight of Curd (15g to 1 kg of curd)
* Brine concentrate: 18% (180 ml Salt [12 level tablespoons] per 1 litre of water)

* Pasteurise the Milk in a Double boiler and leave to cool to 30 C.
* Add the liquid starter or sprinkle om the DVI and leave for 30 minutes.
* Dilute the Rennet in 5ml of cold Boiled water and add to the Milk.
* Mix well.
* Leave until the Curd sets. This should take about an hour or so but may take longer.
* Once set, Cut the curds into 6mm cubes and leave for 15 minutes, gently agitating the pan now and then.
* Very gently, over a 30 minute period, increase the temperature to 34. I find the most reliable way to do this is by adding a little Boiling water to the water already in the Double boiler. This prevents you raising the temperature too quickly.
* Using a ladle, drain off as much whey as you can without further breaking up the curds. Try to keep the temperature at 34 (covering with a cloth or working in a warm environment helps here). {Just discovered a really neat way to speed up the curd draining. Rather than fiddle about with a ladle at the edge of the pan, press down gently with a sieve and ladle the whey from the middle of the sieve. ''See picture''.}
* After 30 minutes, remove blocks of curds and pile them in a heap onto a cheesecloth placed over a cheese draining mat. A (very clean) fish-slice is good for this.
* After 20 minutes, break the Curds into much smaller pieces and dry-salt them (2%).
* Lift the cheesecloth and place into your mould. I used a Colander.
* Wrap and cover and lightly press (I used about 3 kg of weight).
* After 1 hour, turn the cheese over and sprinkle with salt. Leave it pressing for 24 hours.
* The next day, make up an 18% Brine solution and immerse the Cheese for 24 hours.
* Allow to dry and allow 2 weeks to ripen.
* Unless you have a cave handy, the fridge is probably the best place to mature your homemade cheese although it's really going to be too cold. After discovering the top shelf of my often-opened fridge could be as much as 5 C warmer than the bottom, I've decided to mature my cheeses there. As all fridges differ, check various areas of your fridge with a thermometer to find the area that is around 11C [51 F], the ideal 'cave' temperature.


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