Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Goat Camembert

Last Thursday, I tried my hand at making Camembert. The last time I made Camembert, I was in college working on my internship. Unlike the Camembert that I made in the past from cows milk, this attempt was with goat milk. Danielle went over to Anita's to get some more practice milking. She came home with about two and a half gallons of fresh goat milk.

For the chevre I've been making on a weekly basis lately, I've been pasteurizing the milk prior to cheese making. All of my favorite Camemberts have been made with raw milk, so I cleaned everything really well, and then cleaned it again (don't want any bad bugs jumping into the batch), and embarked on my Camembert journey with raw goat milk.

I started around 8 pm that evening while watching the Hokies play ECU in Greenville, NC. Note to self - start earlier next time. I didn't get to bed until 1:15 am, a full two hours after the Hokies wrapped up a win.

I had been worried about the quality of the rennet I purchased a couple months ago. I tried making three batches of 30 minute mozzarella, only to have each batch fail. I was unable to achieve a clean break on any of the mozzarella batches. I had first suspected the the rennet and now suspect the quality of the grocery store milk I used. After talking to a few others who have had more failures than successes with 30 minute mozzarella, it will be a while before I attempt any more mozzarella.

I used Flora Danica for a starter culture and also added my penicillium candidum directly to the milk when adding the starter culture. I've read that geotrichum candidum added with the penicillium candidum helps to create an optimum medium for the penicillium candidum to grow on the surface of the cheeses. The penicillium candidum is the white mold on the surface of the Camembert and Brie cheeses.

I got a nice clean cut 60 minutes after addition of the rennet.

Getting ready to ladle the curds into the molds.

As the whey heads south, the curds quickly settle in the molds.

By morning and several flips later, they looked like this.

Now the Camemberts are snugly resting in my makeshift "cheese cave." I can already tell my cave is not going to be big enough.

All signs point towards success! Now we wait for the fuzz.


We are now on day five for the Goat Camembert, and there are definite signs of fuzz. Each of the cheeses has begun to develop a good covering of penicillium candidum mold (at least I hope that's what it is.) I'm pumped! I will wait another day or two to get a good picture.