Tuesday, November 22, 2011
I waxed my three cheddars this morning. I bought a low melting cheese wax and placed it in a stainless bowl over a pot of boiling water to melt the wax. I used a combination of dipping and brushing to get the wax on. Fortunately, our kitchen ha a marble cutting slab (under the cheeses in the pic), so I put wax paper down and the cool marble solidified the wax quickly. I used a low melting cheese wax so I could heat it in a double boiler instead of directly on the stove in a pot.
It was not as hard or messy as I thought it would be. I made the labels to remind me which one is which, and to remind me of when these ought to be ready. They are now residing quietly in the wine refrigerator at 50F for the next six months.
I had some difficulty with, you guessed it, the port wine cheddar. Even though the surface was dry, the wax peeled away from an area after the first coating. I just removed the wax, remelted it, and continued on. And, this one had three spots where the curds just would not knit completely. I held them closed and "spot welded" the joints with wax, letting it cool before handling. It seemed to work well.
I realized as I was working with these, that when I wax my 3.5 lb Caciotta, I will have to brush on the wax only. It will be too large to handle easily for dipping. Oh, well.