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Mastering Basic Cheesemaking (PDF)
The Fun and Fundamentals of Making Cheese at Home
The craft of home cheesemaking is exploding in popularity. However most “beginner” books are essentially loosely-organized collections of recipes which lack a progressive approach to teaching the fundamentals of this exciting and satisfying traditional skill. Mastering Basic Cheesemaking provides a complete hands-on guide to making cheese and other fermented dairy products from scratch, geared toward helping the novice cheesemaker to develop the intuition and abilities to position them for success, especially in the real world of the home kitchen.
This well-illustrated, clearly written practical guide assumes no prior experience on the part of the aspiring cheesemaker. Topics include:
- Understanding your ingredients, tools and techniques
- Whipping up “instant cheeses” such as ricotta and paneer while learning basic milk chemistry
- Progressing to fermented dairy products such as kefir, yogurt and sour cream
- Using bacteria and coagulant to create spreadable and tender cheeses like quark, chevre, cream cheese and American style cottage cheese
- Graduating to curdled, aged and ripened cheese—mozzarella, feta, cheddar, gouda, and parmesan.
Whether you are a budding cheesemaker, avid do-it-yourselfer, foodie, homesteader or cheese professional, this complete course in beginning cheesemaking from one of North America’s foremost instructors is packed with everything you need to create delicious, nourishing and beautiful classic cheeses and other dairy delights.
Gianaclis Caldwell is the head cheesemaker and owner of Pholia Farm, a licensed dairy well-known for its artisan, aged raw milk cheeses, and for its educational offerings including beginner to advanced cheesemaking courses. She also serves on the American Cheese Society regulatory and academic committee. Gianaclis is the author of several books including Mastering Artisan Cheesemaking, The Small-Scale Cheese Business, and The Small-Scale Dairy. She often writes and photographs for in culture: the word on cheese and other publications, and she blogs at gianacliscaldwell.wordpress.com.
"Gianaclis has taken the craft of cheesemaking and has molded it into another beautiful tome for cheese lovers. Her straightforward recipes will guide you through the exciting processes of crafting different cheeses, starting with the easiest then progressing to the more advanced recipes. She also shares some extra tips here and there to make the endeavor all the more successful. Whether you plan to make cheese or not! Mastering Basic Cheesemaking will help you understand how the myriad of cheese styles can all begin with one simple ingredient — milk. Should you attempt to give it a whirl, this book will be like having her right there beside you as you create your first cheese."
MAX MCCALMAN, ACS CCP™, author of numerous books on cheese including Mastering Cheese: Lessons for Connoisseurship from a Maître Fromager.
"'If only I'd known…' words that kept repeating in my mind as I read Mastering Basic Cheesemaking. This is the book I longed for years ago when I embarked on my own cheesemaking journey. Not just another how-to, this beginner's book is designed to teach. The reader is seamlessly led through a progression of recipes intended to bring about a true understanding of what is happening in the vat. This book is all about success! I love it."
KIRSTEN K. SHOCKEY, author of Fermented Vegetables: Creative Recipes for Fermenting 64 Vegetables & Herbs in Krauts, Kimchis, Brined Pickles, Chutneys, Relishes & Pastes.
"Over the last few years, Gianaclis Caldwell has written pretty much every book you need to start a small-scale artisan cheese business. With Mastering Basic Cheesemaking, she turns her attention to home cheesemaking and creates another must-have title. Writing in a way that demystifies the process and makes it accessible to everyone, Caldwell takes the reader logically through many different styles of cheese. This is the kind of book where you don't realize how much you are learning until you get to the end and eat your creations. If you can use a cookbook, this book will show you how to make some great cheese… and also teach you how you did it."
GORDON EDGAR, author of Cheesemonger: A Life on the Wedge, Cheddar: A Journey to the Heart of America's Most Iconic Cheese and cheese buyer for Rainbow Grocery Cooperative in San Francisco since 1994.
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The Fun and Fundamentals of Making Cheese at Home