Tuesday, September 18, 2007

And on That Farm They Had Some Cheese…

The caretakers on the farm I visited in Costa Rica make cheese from the milk of their cows (I know, revolutionary concept!).

First they put the morning’s milk into a large Tupperware container, about the size of the truck box that rides in the back of pickups. Then they add a tablet of culture and let it ferment for about a day.

When it has solidified enough, salt is added and the curds are packed into little boxes that have weights put on their lids. Depending on the stage, they may have just a couple rocks, or a board from above with huge weights pushing the whey out of the little weep holes in the boxes.

After another day, the cheese is removed and can either be eaten fresh, or can be smoked for the next week.

The fresh stuff is springy, mild and a little spongy when cut because of all the air holes. Once it’s older it will be a little stronger and more crumbly.

Just a little side note, I'm leaving for a trip to the States tomorrow morning. I don't know how frequently I'll be able to post, but if you'd like to visit while I'm in Minneapolis/St. Paul, Spokane or Seattle, drop me a line and we'll see what we can work out!


DrowseyMonkey said...

Fascinating! Thanks for sharing.

Corrie said...

Nice Colie - When will you be in Spokane? We'll try to phone you when you're there... its the closest thing to "seeing" you when you come up!

Nic said...

This is the definitive on central american cheese too as far as, there's only one kind, so it's pretty simple!