Sunday, June 28, 2009

Smoked White Wensleydale Cheese

This is stunningly superb. It's GREAT. My MIL is from an area very close to Wensleydale (just one ridge and a moor away) and she knows all about how Wensleydale cheese should taste.

She also has stated that mine is better than any she's had in the last 80 years. No, she doesn't have dementia! I make very good white wensleydale (ww).

And I also like to experiment...

In the kitchen, duh. Harumph!

The last cheese round of ww I made was three and a half pounds. Not too bad from starting with 5 litres of milk. Anyways, the other night there was just a bit left and I happened to have some red gum wood chips soaking for the smoker.

"Hmmmmmm," thought YT (Yours Truly, me), "I wonder what ww will taste like when smoked?" YT also deduced that, "dang, I'd better put a piece of foil on the rack of the smoker otherwise it'll drip down and be ruined."

To cut a long story short (trust me, I can make this very long), here's what you do when smoking a soft cheese.

Slice your soft cheese to about one cm thick (use a wire cutter). Lay the cheese slices on your smoker rack that has aluminium foil over it. Smoke for 15 mins, then flip the slices and smoke for a further 15 minutes.

Note: the cheese slices will be very soft. If you can't flip them without the slices falling apart, then just lay a piece of foil over the top and flip with your hands on each side. Peel off the old bottom layer before smoking for the last 15 mins, of course.

You can use this in many different ways. The cheese is very soft when it first comes off the smoker so you can use it as a spread before it cools. The other night I spread it on some garlic bread... mmmmmmmmmmmmmm; Ambrosia!

If you can restrain yourself from eating it all in one day, then you'll find it ages quite well and firms up nicely. I like to let the slices age overnight on a rack and then the next day wrap them in grease-proof cooking paper and toss them in the fridge. They are seriously good after a week or so.

Hey, give it a go! You never know till you try. I'd try this with any soft cheese, should be darned tasty with a nice, firm bleu.

1 comment:

Naturelady said...

I can't believe I found a fellow smoker of cheeses-- at last!

I love to smoke cheese too -- whenever I have some room left on the rack after I filled it with salmon... so far I've tried infusing some taste into otherwise boring American cheddar, or ordinary Swiss. Never tried a soft cheese yet!
Did you know that you can smoke dried beans & lentils too?

Anyway, thanks for stopping by my blog -- it's great to find yours, it's very enjoyable!

And where in Alaska do you hale from?