This recipe is a duplicate of an excellent
blue cheese called "Saga Blue."
It starts with a simple "Farmer's Cheese" (Neufchâtel should do
fine as a starting curd). An inoculum of Penicillium from a cheese you
are duplicating is added to the curd, and aeration holes are created so that
air can enter the cheese. Temperature and humidity need to be controlled
so that aging proceeds at the correct rate, and the cheese does not dry out,
nor "weep" with moisture.
- Cheese press
- Sterile clean cheese cloths
- Thermometer reading in the 0-40 C (50-100 F) range
- Sterilized rod
- "Cool box" (refrigerator set to 10 C (50
- Drained curds from "Farmer's Cheese"
- 1 teaspoon of uncontaminated "Saga Blue" cheese
(or other selected blue cheese to use as an inoculum)
for makiing Blue Cheese
- Start with cold drained curds from "Farmer's
Cheese" made from two gallons of milk.
- Sprinkle with 2 teaspoons of salt, mix in to form
- In a blender, blend 1 teaspoon of uncontaminated blue
cheese (Saga Blue) with 1/4 cup of cool clean water to
create a smooth suspension of cheese (the inoculum).
- Pour the inoculum over the salted curds, toss to
- Line the cheese press with a sterile cheese cloth
(sterilized by boiling), and load the curd. cheese press lightly so that the curd
are not pressed together, but instead retain air spaces within the
- Place in the cheese press overnight!
- The next morning, remove from the cheese press, and
create air hole by inserting a sterilized rod, about 1/4 inch in diameter (6
mm) through the cheese every inch or so. This is to allow air to enter
the cheese which is necessary for growth of the mold.
- Rub the surface lightly with salt, and place the
aerated cheese on a dry sterile cheese cloth. Fold the cloth over to
- Place on a non-corrosive rack in a "cool
box" which will hold the temperature around 10 C (50 F) to encourage air
circulation around the cheese.
- Monitor the temperature and humidity. The
temperature should be around 10 C, and the humidity around 70%. You can
elevate the humidity with a pan of water in the bottom of the "cool
box." Since the cheese will be aged unwaxed, higher humidity is
important so that the cheese does not dry out. On the other hand, if it
is "dripping wet" so the cheese "weeps," the cheese
- Turn the cheese daily, replace the cheese cloth
with a dry sterile one if it appears wet.
- After a week or ten days, a white
"bloom" will appear on the surface and the
holes of the cheese. They should be large enough so
that air will not be excluded from the interior of the cheese. After a month and a half, the outside develops a white with green bloom.
The interior should also have bloomed; if not then leave until bloom develops
before preparing for cleaning!