We continue our look at the ’8 basic steps of cheese making’ as published on the Cheesemongers weblog in November, and how these steps are carried out at Sirana Gligora on the Island Of Pag in Croatia. Sirana Gligora have been making artisan Paški Sir since 1995 and moved into their newly build modern dairy in January 2010.
The ‘‘8 basic steps to cheese making‘ aimed to give you the knowledge and confidence to deal with your cheese monger. The information was taken from Max McCalam’s latest book, ‘Mastering Cheese’ where he used the work of Dairy Science professor Frank Kosikowski, the founder of the American Cheese Society.
Step 1: Setting the Milk can be viewed by clicking here.
Step 2: Cutting the Curds can be viewed by clicking here.
Step 3: Cooking and Holding can be viewed by clicking here.
Step 4, 5 & 6: Dripping & Draining, Knitting and Pressing can be viewed by clicking here.
Step 7: Salting the Cheese
The most important ingredient in cheese making after the milk is the salt which has multiple effects upon the development and final taste. It reduces the moisture content of the cheese (essential in a hard type cheese such as Paški Sir), controls the growth of molds and bacteria and helps the outside rind to develop. Too much salting will severely damage the final taste and not enough salting will result in a weak taste and underdeveloped rind.
At Sirana Gligora, the cheese is taken from the molds and placed in a salt brine for 24 hours using the ‘white gold’ from the ‘Valle de Pago’ salt production on the Island of Pag, a process known as brining.
Step 8: Curing the Cheese
So there we have it fresh cheese made just 24 hours ago and ready to be taken into the cave for maturing. Although we have now made cheese using these methods it is still a long way from the finished article as the taste, texture and aromas need further care and development before it is ready for release into the market.
At Sirana Gligora the specially designed cave is climate controlled to provide the perfect conditions for maturing Paški Sir. A state of the art air conditioner regulates the temperature and humidity and provides constant air circulation through a micro-perforated air-flow system.
In our next blog, we will see why the affinage process is so important in the making of Sirana Gligora Paški Sir and as we fast approach the milking season on the Island of Pag, we will attempt to follow the milk in a new blog ‘From Ewe to You’ and cover all the aspects of affinage along the way.
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- Artisan Cheese, The Making of Sirana Gligora Paški Sir. Step 4,5 & 6 all about Dripping & Draining, Kinitting and Pressing the Curd (paskisir.wordpress.com)
- Artisan Cheese, the making of Sirana Gligora Paški Sir Step 3.Cooking and holding (paskisir.wordpress.com)
- Artisan cheese, the making of Sirana Gligora Paški Sir 2. All about cutting the curd (paskisir.wordpress.com)
- Triple Super Gold at the World Cheese Awards for Sirana Gligora Paški Sir (paskisir.wordpress.com)
- Artisan Cheese, the making of Sirana Gligora Paški Sir 1. Setting the milk (paskisir.wordpress.com)