Swiss cheese is known for its buttery, nutty, and creamy flavor.
Swiss has a very distinct appearance with holes throughout the cheese. These holes are actually formed from the Propionic bacteria that generates carbon dioxide. Bubbles form from this and develop a holey appearance and get larger with age.
Yield: 4 pounds
Aging: Under 3 Months
Skill Level: Advanced
- 4 gallons of milk
- 5/16 tsp MM100 Culture or 1 Pack C101 Mesophilic Culture
- 1/8 tsp Propionic Shermanii
- 3 ml Single Strength Liquid Rennet
- Salt for Brine
- Calcium Chloride for Pasteurized milk
Heat the Milk & Add Culture
- Heat your milk up to 84F
- When it reaches 84F you can start to add your culture in and 3/4 tsp of calcium chloride if required. Stir to combine
- Cover and allow it to ripen for 45 minutes to 1 hour
- After ripening for 1 hour, you can add the liquid single strength Rennet and allow it to rest for 45 minutes.
Cut the Curd & Remove Whey
- After 45 minutes, your curd should be ready to be cut, if not, allow it to sit for longer
- Cut the curd into 1 cm cube size pieces over the span of 5-10 minutes
- Allow it to rest for 5 minutes
- Stir gently for another 5 minutes and then allow the curds to rest for another 5 minutes.
- Carefully, pour out 1/3 of the whey. Reducing the whey in the mixture will help reduce the lactose and slow down the bacteria and acid production.
Heat the Curds
- Slowly heat the curds until they reach a temperature of about 102F
- You can slowly heat the curds by adding hot water to the curds using the following steps:
- Carefully add water at 130F to the curds so that the curds reach a temperature of 95F in 5 minutes time. Stir the curds for another 5 minutes
- Continue adding more water so that the curds now reach a temperature of 102F within 5-10 minutes.
- The water that was added in the steps above should match the amount of whey that was originally taken out.
- Stir the curds slowly for 30-40 minutes to achieve desired dryness.
- Once cooked properly, allow the curds to settle.
Drain the Curds
- Pour out the whey to about one inch above the cheese surface and place a plate on top of the curd mass.
- Start with 2.5 lbs. for 4 gallons or 1.5 lbs. for 2 gallons.
- Remove the remaining whey and move the curd into a cheese mold lined with a cheesecloth for draining.
Press the Cheese
- Start to press your cheese about twice the weight of the cheese which is about 8-10 lbs.
- Turn the cheese and re-wrap it. Press for 1 hour and increase the weight after 1-1.5 hours
- The weight should increase from 20-25 lbs.
- During this pressing period, the cheese should remain between 75-80F for the entire time.
Allow the Cheese to Rest
- After your cheese has been pressed, allow your cheese to rest in a cooler area of 52-56F for the next 8-10 hours.
- Your cheese should have developed its final acidity and it shouldn’t be greater than 5.2-5.3 because it will hinder the development of gar forming bacteria.
Salting the Cheese
- Put your cheese in a brine solution for about 2.5-3 hours per lb.
- To create a brine solution
- After an hour or two, flip the cheese and re-salt the surface, but be careful to not over salt as it will inhibit the gar producing bacteria
Aging the Cheese
- After brining, dry off the cheese and move to 50-55F and 80-85% humidity space for 2-4 weeks.
- Wipe cheese with a damp cloth daily to control mold.
- After the initial few weeks, adjust the temperature to 65-70F at 80% humidity for another 3-4 weeks for larger holes and 2-3 weeks for smaller holes.
- During this time, turn the cheese daily to help keep the moisture evenly throughout the cheese.
- The amount of time aging the last step will determine the amount of gas produced and the size of the holes.
After the last aging stage, you can either wax the cheese or more to a cold room at 45-50Fand 85% humidity for a month or more to increase the flavor.
For a more in-depth look at how to How to Make Swiss Cheese watch this video
Video Credit to Cheese52