Cold smoked cheese!


 

JayHeyl

TVWBB Pro
You can but just like with meat it will impact the texture, particularly for softer cheeses that have higher moisture content. You can probably freeze a block of Parmesan and not even notice the difference when it's thawed. I honestly don't remember what the softer cheeses were like after being frozen. I tried it decades ago, didn't like the result, and haven't messed with it again since. Well, mostly not. I have frozen those big bags of shredded mozzarella from Costco. I can't use two of those bags before at least one goes moldy to it's either freeze it or throw it away unused. Since I only use it for less critical applications I've found it acceptable.
 

BrianCal

TVWBB Pro
@Chuck-roaniecowpony got me thinking about the longer smoke. I have noticed on some harder cheeses, like cheddar, that they could handle more smoke. So went 8 hours today on a few different ones - Guiness, Tillamook, Vermont and New Zealand.

I must say, the color is gorgeous. Really looks cool. Can’t wait to try it, figure the earliest would be Thanksgiving, and then maybe some for Xmas and NYE !!

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JayHeyl

TVWBB Pro
Beautiful color. Looks almost like the artificial caramel color spray they use on the commercial stuff. Funny how the real thing usually doesn't look as visually pleasing as the fake. Those should have a wonderful smoky flavor. What type of smoke wood did you use?
 

BrianCal

TVWBB Pro
Beautiful color. Looks almost like the artificial caramel color spray they use on the commercial stuff. Funny how the real thing usually doesn't look as visually pleasing as the fake. Those should have a wonderful smoky flavor. What type of smoke wood did you use?

Thanks.
For wood, I used maple pellets in the Amazen smoker tube
 

BrianCal

TVWBB Pro
Minor point, but latex gloves are not sterile. While they do keep the bacteria on your hands from getting on the cheese, whatever was on the surface of the gloves is still going to be there. You also most likely touch the exterior of the gloves while putting them on, largely defeating your stated purpose. You'd do better bacteria-wise to wash your hands with warm water and soap, then maybe use hand sanitizer.

I like your variety of cheeses. When it cools off again I'm going to have to smoke a lot more cheese. I did some a couple months ago but it was too warm and the cheese was starting to get soft before it was really ready to come off. Still came out okay.

I will always use gloves. While I see your point, and I do wash my hands before I put them on, I do want the extra protection. Kind of like whem I go to the doctor or dentist, I’d rather they wear gloves.
And your point of secondary germs applies to hand sanitizer as well, as soon as you touch anything else, even the sanitizer bottle, you are re-exposed.
 

JayHeyl

TVWBB Pro
And your point of secondary germs applies to hand sanitizer as well, as soon as you touch anything else, even the sanitizer bottle, you are re-exposed.
True, but then the same applies if you're wearing gloves. As soon as you touch anything, the exterior of the gloves are contaminated and will spread whatever you picked up to anything else you touch. If the objective is solely to protect your hands from what you're touching then this is fine. If the objective is to not spread bacteria and mold from one object to another, then you need to change gloves in between touching things.

I worked in a lab setting once and observed a colleague, who had gone through the lab training the same time I did, put on gloves, pick up potentially infectious material, put it away, and then start using the keyboard without removing the gloves. I said, "You realize you've just contaminated the keyboard, right?" She replied, "Oh, it's okay, I'm wearing gloves." She obviously didn't understand the point of the gloves in this particular situation. She was supposed to remove the gloves as soon as she put away the dangerous material. By leaving the gloves on she was potentially spreading the infectious material to everything she touched.

I just live dangerously, thoroughly washing my hands and hoping for the best. As my mother often says, "I haven't killed anyone yet."
 

BrianCal

TVWBB Pro
True, but then the same applies if you're wearing gloves. As soon as you touch anything, the exterior of the gloves are contaminated and will spread whatever you picked up to anything else you touch. If the objective is solely to protect your hands from what you're touching then this is fine. If the objective is to not spread bacteria and mold from one object to another, then you need to change gloves in between touching things.

I worked in a lab setting once and observed a colleague, who had gone through the lab training the same time I did, put on gloves, pick up potentially infectious material, put it away, and then start using the keyboard without removing the gloves. I said, "You realize you've just contaminated the keyboard, right?" She replied, "Oh, it's okay, I'm wearing gloves." She obviously didn't understand the point of the gloves in this particular situation. She was supposed to remove the gloves as soon as she put away the dangerous material. By leaving the gloves on she was potentially spreading the infectious material to everything she touched.

I just live dangerously, thoroughly washing my hands and hoping for the best. As my mother often says, "I haven't killed anyone yet."
Yup, understood it the first time.
But at least with gloves I’m not getting the nasty taste of hand sanitizer on the cheese.
 

John Neuser

TVWBB Fan
@Chuck-roaniecowpony got me thinking about the longer smoke. I have noticed on some harder cheeses, like cheddar, that they could handle more smoke. So went 8 hours today on a few different ones - Guiness, Tillamook, Vermont and New Zealand.

I must say, the color is gorgeous. Really looks cool. Can’t wait to try it, figure the earliest would be Thanksgiving, and then maybe some for Xmas and NYE !!

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View attachment 38514
Brian, what is the significance of the toothpicks in the cheese? Do they perform some function? Very curious. Thank you.
 

BrianCal

TVWBB Pro
Brian, what is the significance of the toothpicks in the cheese? Do they perform some function? Very curious. Thank you.

Lol, awesome that you noticed, good eye. It was so I knew which cheese was which when they were done. I color coded the toothpicks, then made a cheat sheet where I wrote down which cheese matched which color.
 

JayHeyl

TVWBB Pro
Now that you mention color coding I see that one of the toothpicks is red. I'd noticed them and wondered how they got burned like that without the cheese melting.
 

John Neuser

TVWBB Fan
Dish sponge: absolutely. Dampen and put in microwave for 30 seconds. I use two sponges and rotate them through the dishwasher every time I run it.
 
I just wash my hands often. But for taking them out of the smoker, since I smoke them on grill mats (flexible teflon coated mats), I just pull the whole mat out and put it on a tray in the fridge until it hardens again, then they are more durable on the outside and won't get marks as easily with tongs, fingerprints, etc. The mats also prevent sagging between the grates.

All this talk reminds me that I bought a couple big blocks of Tillamook cheddar to smoke. I'm on my last little block.
 

 

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