Over the last few weeks I have had four requests for the cheese recipe I use for Wensleydale. So here it is. Just make sure you have at least 9 hours up your sleeve and don’t start making it at 7 pm and end up finishing at 3 am like I did a few weeks ago!
Makes about 850 gm (2 pounds)
- 8 litres (2 gallons) whole milk
- 1 quarter teaspoon Direct set Mesophylic culture
- 2.5 ml Rennet mixed with 25 ml non-chlorinated water
- 3 ml Calcium Chloride if using homogenised milk
- 3 teaspoons non-ionised salt
Sterilise all equipment. I put a litre of water into the pot, put all utensils in it, cover and boil for 15 minutes. Anything that may melt, I wipe down with vinegar and a boiled cloth. If I handle the milk/curds or finished cheese, I spray vinegar on my hands from a spray bottle and rub together until dry. That way the milk will not get infected by any wild yeasts or moulds that maybe on my hands.
Using a double boiler, heat the milk to 30°C (86°F). If using homogenised milk, add calcium chloride to 2 tablespoons water and mix to the milk gently. Add Mesophylic starter, mix well for a minute, cover and allow milk to ripen for 45 minutes.
Stir the curds and whey for 10 minutes, then let rest for 15 minutes. Stir the curd again as you raise the temperature to 32°C (90°F). Maintain this temperature, and stir the curd as often as necessary to stop the curd knitting together. Do this for 2 hours.
Drain the whey off and ladle the curd into a colander lined with cheesecloth. Tie in a bundle and for 2 hours, open every 15 minutes to break the curd into small pieces.
After the two hours break up the curd for one final time and apply the salt. Mix the curds and salt well.
Place half the curd into a cheesecloth lined 1 kg cheese basket and apply a layer of sterilised sage leaves (sterilise on clean oven tray at 120°C (250°F) for 10 minutes), pressing down well.
Fill with remainder of curd and press at 5 kg (10 pounds) for 15 minutes. Carefully remove cheese from cloth, turn over and press at 25 kg (50 pounds) for 12 hours.
Remove from press and cheesecloth. Place on a board and allow to dry for 2 days. Apply wax and store at 13-15°C (55-59°F) at 80-85% humidity. Can be eaten in 3 weeks or aged for up to 3 months.
This is a wonderful cheese, and I have never been able to find Wensleydale in the local grocery store. There is no equal as far as I am concerned and beats the store bought tasty cheddar any day. I age my Wensleydale for three months, and find that its flavour is just right.
If you like this Wensleydale Cheese recipe, and are after more easy-to-make cheese recipes, then pop on over to my cheese making blog and check out the eBook that I have created.
Here is the blurb;
Have you ever wanted to make real cheese at home, but didn’t know where or how to start? Well look no further, as this book makes it easy for the beginner to jump right in and make cheese.
Keep Calm, and Make Cheese steps you through the process of home cheese making with 24 tried and tested recipes for the budding home cheese maker to follow and create.
With over 60 pictures, and links to 12 of the author’s simple to follow cheese making video tutorials, the whole process becomes much easier to achieve success than you would by reading a normal cheese making book.
After reading this book you too will be able to “Keep Calm and Make Cheese”, in your very own home.
Visit Little Green Cheese blog for all my cheese making video tutorials and much, much more.