Not long ago, I was at the grocery store picking up my favorite German Rye Bread. I stopped by the cheese area, where I struck up a nice conversation with the woman there. She recommended this Blue cheese from France. Its called “St. Agur.” I rushed home, un wrapped the wedge and tasted it. In layman’s terms, its wonderful. You can purchase it here or print coupons, and also learn more about it. Or, you can follow my journey and copy this this delightful Blue creamy cheese.
How to Make St. Agur Cheese
I knew it was a creamy cheese, so I picked up an additional 2 pints of cream to mix in with 3 gallons of Raw Cow Milk. The cheese is actually made with pasteurized milk at the factory, I decided to use the raw and not pasteurize it. The black line is the cream that rose to the top after the dairy guys put it in the gallon jug.
In order to get the culture going, I set aside a small amount of milk with a cut of St. Agur cheese. The culture is the same for all Blues, penicillium roquefort. After the milk reached 90 degrees, I added cubes of frozen cultured buttermilk I bought weeks ago. Before it went bad, I froze it. They have the same starter – “Mesophilic” – which is used for curds not being heated over 104 degrees.
After that, I added the cheese and milk mix and stirred for 2 minutes. After 30 minutes, the “Penicilium Roquefort” culture from the cheese rose to the top, and the cheese blended with the milk.
Once blended, you pour in the rennet, of which I used 1/2 tab from the supply that came with my kit that I bought 3 years ago (and it still worked). After 40 minutes, check the curd. If it is the right consistency, you cut the curd. I had fun using my new curd cutter!
With the curd cut, you now let the whey expel from the curd for approximately 40 minutes. After that, put the curd in a piece of cheese cloth that has been sterilized. Hang to drain the whey until it stops draining.
Once drained, put both cloth and curd in a mold and drain more, flipping a few times, until morning. You then crumble the curd and add salt. With no recipe to follow except the description on the web link above, I noted that it had indicated the the cheese was not as salty as other Blues. So, I sprinkled 1 tablespoon of “Himalayan” sea salt in, mixed it up, and then added an additional 1 tablespoon and mixed it in. Then, put back in the mold, this time with a little weight (3 pounds) added lightly pressed. Flip it over twice in a 4 hour period.
Finally, let it sit out, flipping once a day for two days. Pierce the cheese wheel with a sterilized probe to allow for oxygen to help the Blue mold to do its job. Now, put it into a container to be set in your cheese cave (a cool, dark place) to ripen or age for 90 days.