Friday, April 27, 2007
The Importance of Cheese
I have been rather frantically busy the last few days. In between extended hours in the studio, I have also had paperwork to do, all of the usual kid and house stuff because Doug was in the city on Wednesday and Thursday, prepping panels, and last night there was a memorable trip to the vet with a bleeding dog who got a chunk of her ear bit off while outside protecting us from intruders. AND I am still obsessed with making cheese.
This morning I waxed two cheese rounds that I made in the last few weeks. The unwaxed wedge of cheese on the plate is what's left of the very first successful (the first few tries were a disaster!) batch that I made. The cheese is supposed to age for at least 2 months for better flavor, but I had this smaller round and we were dying of curiosity so we tried it after only a week. It was really good! Anyway, I wanted to let the others age longer so they get waxed. One is cheddar and one is caraway cheddar. The cheddar round is a bit funky, I had trouble getting enough weight to press it and so it isn't as firm and solid as it should be. Then my neighbor loaned me her cheese press (yes, two people on the same road who happen to be making cheese, what are the odds of that?), and so that one, on the right, turned out much better. Today I have another batch in progress, this time with cumin.
I have also made several batches of goat cheese from milk bought at the health food store. It is incredibly easy to make and the flavor is much better than store bought especially if you press fresh herbs into it.
I know, I know, super fascinating pioneer life of a painter. I just feel that I should try to balance out all of the manufactured stuff we have with a few things that I can make myself. Making things, whether it's a painting or a sweater or cheese gives me a feeling of purpose and accomplishment.