old cheese making traditions
for quality and taste is paramount to our ongoing success. Each batch
of cheese is made by hand in the traditional way by our Head
Cheesemaker, Paul Sutter and tested
at our plant, (a federally inspected CFIA facility) to meet the demands
of the industry and our growing customer base.
basic steps of cheese making:
milk gets delivered daily with a tanker truck fresh from the farm.
milk runs from the truck through the pasteurizer, where we heat
the milk to 72.5 C. With pasteurizing we eliminate the pathogens
in the milk.
the milk gets tested for its fat content. The finished cheese gets
tested for any pathogen.
starts when the milk is in the Vat
the pasteurizing of the milk its placed in a cheese vat. Thats
when the craft of the head cheese maker begins. First we add the
bacterial cultures. After about an hour of stirring the microbial
enzyme is added and the milk gets set for coagulating.
Cutting the curd
about 30 min of coagulating,the milk has curdled and turned into
cheese. The cheese maker uses a wire knife and cuts the curdled
milk carefully in to small hazel nut size pieces.
the cheese maker is stirring the curd by hand carefully for 15 minutes.
In this process the curd shrinks and separates from the whey.
the cheese moulds
cheese is now poured by hand in to the moulds. This process has
to be done quickly because the curd will keep shrinking.
filled moulds are then put in a stack where the cheese will sit
for about 5 hours, during which time the moulds are turned 3 times.
stage is where the cheese is salted in brine. The cheese is left
to soak in the brine for about 2 hours to add flavour and to create
the right condition for the maturing process.
the end of the process every single piece of cheese is visually
checked and then hand wrapped in special paper so the cheese can
removed from the brine the cheese is placed in the maturing room.
Over the next 10 days the cheese will get turned 5 times. During
this process a nice bloomy white mould will grow and cover the surface.
This gives the cheese a great flavor with a delicate note of mushroom.
Edgar Smith, Vice-President in Natural Pastures’ firm cheese maturing room.
Photo by Neil Havers