After waiting patiently for 4 weeks, I finally made my cheddar debut. I was nervous, having never done this before, that I would open the wax and it wouldn’t be cheddar or that it would be moldy. After I made, air-dried, and later waxed the cheese (see post below), I kept it in a cooler in my kitchen and, everyday, I put in a new icepack to keep the temperature low. You want the temperature in the 50s – warmer than a fridge, but colder than my apartment. Also, when you wax the cheese, you want to make sure that the wax covers the cheese completely so no mold can grow.
Alas, I “cut the cheese” and inside was…..Cheddar! It tasted sharp and fresh. I was so excited.
I have two big hunks and I brought one to a barbecue for people to taste. This was my first foray in public with my own cheese and I was a little nervous that people wouldn’t like it.I presented my cheddar for the sophisticated Brooklyn-ites at the party and, as you can see, they were a little hesitant at first. After a few bites, they dug in and the cheddar was a success.
It gave me a lot of confidence to keep going with this — people at the barbecue couldn’t believe I made this in my own kitchen. They think cheese comes from the gods or has to be processed in a factory. It’s great to make things that are available in nature (+buying the necessary bacteria over the internet!). Next is Swiss!!!