Posts Tagged ‘Farmers Markets’

 Ideal weather for aging cheese

Optimal range of temperature is between 45º and 55º F. and should remain as constant as possible.
To obtain this consider:
• Location of cave … On the North side will exclude solar gain problems
• Frost line … Building below grade will use cooler earth temps for cooling
• Insulation of walls and ceiling … To isolate from other heated space
• Opening of doors … How much traffic in and out of the cave
• Heat generated from motors, lights, etc.
• Heat is released from cheese as it ages … The more cheese you are ripening the greater this consideration becomes
• Use of artificial heating and cooling units
• Artificial heating and cooling back-ups
Relative Humidity (RH%):
Optimal range of humidity is between 85% and 95%.
To obtain the above consider:
• Permeability of walls
• Humidifiers that do not produce steam as well as a proper hygrometer to monitor this
• Availability of clean cold water … A source for increasing humidity
Cannibal Island Creamery – Capt. Crottin


Weather for Cannibal Island

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Avg. High 55° 57° 57° 58° 62° 65° 68° 68° 70° 66° 58° 54°
Avg. Low 38° 40° 41° 44° 46° 50° 52° 52° 50° 47° 44° 38°
Mean 47° 48° 50° 51° 54° 58° 60° 61° 60° 57° 52° 47°
Avg. Precip. 8.3 in 6.7 in 7.1 in 3.5 in 1.3 in 0.4 in 0.1 in 0.4 in 0.9 in 3.1 in 7.7 in 8.5 in

This is exciting as our proximity to the ocean and the constant on-shore breeze the temps could easily be two degrees lower on Island meaning very little artificial cooling (smaller carbon footprint) will be needed for aging in the cave.  We will have it covered and located to maximize the sunlight conditions for the warmest months of the year.  Humidity will need to be closely controlled.  We are fortunate to get on average 8.5″ of rainfall per year.  Add the river and ocean and we are very humid.  Ventilation and circulation will be required to maintain optimal conditions for aging.


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The stork delivered a baby pig this week.  His name is No-Whey!  His job is to eat all the unused whey that is the by-product from cheesemaking.  Whey pork is simply the best pork you can buy.  Right now he is asleep in the dogs bed curled up in the blanket by the wood stove.  He eats goats milk and half and half.  He is loud when hungry…which is all the time.

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Cheese room will be 16′ x 16′ with a 7′ sliding glass door and three 6′ x 6′ windows in the front.  We have the 16′ x 22′ Kolpak Refrig unit for our aging room.  Restroom and boiler, return tank and hot water heater room.  All said, 32 x 32 building.  We need to find a propane tank and propane hot water heater with a 100 gallon capacity.  Dropped off bid specs yesterday to contractors.  Spec’s are with the State for approval.  Still need to find local help for removing and installing boiler and return unit with water filtration!  Picked up the balance of the windows today from the Craigslist seller.   Now I need to find propane fridge, hot water heater, toilet, sink, exhaust fans, and a metal exterior door for the bathroom.  I’m sure there is more…

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Version 54 of the plan.  Located 16 x 20 modular freezer unit for dry storage aging (cave).  Will fit perfect into the facility.  Plenty of room and modular to grow!  Craiglsit is awesome!   Met with contractors Monday to discuss flooring and drainage.  Decided to go smaller on the Vat/Make room and go larger with storage and refrig space.  Window’s for the new facility have been secured!  (Craigslist).  Our building is 30′ x 32′.  We plan to put an upstairs in the unit to make an office and testing area with a beautiful view of the valley and pacific ocean!  We spent all day in the unit cleaning and making improvements Monday and Tuesday.  Building contractor is coming back today.  We secured permission to run underground line to fill from the milk barn!  This will save many hours and $.  Boiler needs a conversion unit from Natural Gas to Propane.  Also would be nice to have onboard heat exchanger for hot water usage.  Vat needs thermometers new and digital.  (Remember to place vat in middle of room to access from all sides.  One drain in the room only!.

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This Monday we expect several visitors.  The first is the inspector.  He needs to approve the plan for the cheese plant and design.  Next the contractors start framing the building by noon.  Facelift for the building starts sunday.  Remove old roof and siding.  Level the deck.  Remove everything from inside the buildings.  Call on steam boiler mechanic for set-up.  Propane people are less than helpful.  Pickup moulds, sinks, racking, boiler, 1000 gallon stainless steel water tank, balance tank for boiler, cheese forms and scale.  Start looking for HVAC for the cheese cave.  Must have happy cheese.  Get a design for the custom wood racks for aging the cheese.  Should be enough for Sunday and Monday.

Maryella and the Vat

Maryella and the Vat

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Artichoke and Goat Cheese Bruschetta

18 baguette bread slices, cut on the diagonal about 1/4-inch thick
Extra-Virgin olive oil
2 jars (6 to 6 1/2 ounces each) marinated artichoke hearts
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley, divided
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese (preferably Parmigiano-Reggiano)
Freshly ground
black pepper
6 ounces creamy
goat cheese, crumbled

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Brush baguette bread slices on both sides with olive oil and place them on a baking sheet. Bake slices until just crisp, about 3 minutes a side. Remove from oven and leave on baking sheet. (Bread can be toasted 3 hours ahead; cover loosely with foil and leave at room temperature.)

Drain artichokes, reserving about 2 tablespoons of the oil they were packed in, and place them in a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Add reserved 2 tablespoons artichoke oil, 1/2 cup of the parsley, Parmesan cheese, and several grindings of black pepper. Process, pulsing machine, until mixture is a coarse puree. (Puree can be prepared 3 hours ahead; cover and leave at cool room temperature.)

When ready to serve, spread each bread slice with a mound of artichoke puree and top with some crumbled goat cheese. (Bruschetta can be assembled 1 hour ahead; leave uncovered, at room temperature.)

When ready to eat, bake until cheese is melted and bruschetta are warm, approximately 5 to 6 minutes. Sprinkle bruschetta with black pepper and some of the remaining parsley. Serve warm on a platter.

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