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Thanksgiving Cheddar Cheese
From the Kitchen at Durand House

Category: Thanksgiving
Preparation Time: A While

Recipe Ingredients
To make a 1 1/2 pound cheese, combine 2 gallons of whole milk with 3/4 C. Buttermilk.

Recipe Directions
Let mixture set at room temp. overnight to 'ripen.'
Next day: warm the milk gently in a double boiler to 86 Degrees F and mix in one cheese rennet tablet dissolved in glass of cool water and let the mixture coagulate undisturbed.
When the milk curdles (about 45 mintues), cut the curds into 3/8 inch cubes.
Mix the curds and allow to stand for 15 minutes, then heat again, slowly to 100 degrees F.
Cook for about an hour until a piece of cooled curd retains its shape when squeezed.
If it crumbles, it needs more cooking.
Drain the curds for a few minutes and rinse out the double boiler, then cheddar the curds.
To Cheddar the curds: Return them to the double boiler, spread over a rack lined with cheesecloth.
Cover and reheat to 98d.F for 30 to 40 minutes until the curds form one solid mass.
Remove the curds, cut them into strips 1 inch. wide and return them to the pan.
(NO HEAT)Turn the strips every 15 to 20 minutes for an hour.
Cut the strips into cubes and gradually mix in 1 tablespoon of salt, being careful not to bruise the curds.
Let them stand for 10 minutes, put them into a cheesecloth, and press them an hour.
Remove the cheese from the press, unwrap it, dip it in warm water, and fill in and smooth off any cracks or uneveness.
Rewrap in a clean cheesecloth and weight with 40 pounds for 24 hours, then remove and let cheese dry for four to five days in a cool, airy location.
Turn cheese twice a day during this time period and wipe it dry each time with a clean cloth.
When a hard, dry skin has formed, rub it with oil or seal it with paraffin.
Cheddar can be eaten after 6 weeks but is best if aged six months or more.
American Cheese is actually a mild variety of Cheddar cheese.
**TIP** Coating cheddar cheese in parafin is an axcellent way to preserve it.

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