Have you ever cut into this cheese and wondered how it was made? Well let me tell you that this one is well worth taking up cheesemaking as a hobby just to find out. Camembert, if made correctly can be a very rewarding cheese to make. It should go well with my quince paste.
"Camembert was reputedly first made in 1791 by Marie Harel, a farmer from Normandy, following advice from a priest who came from Brie.
However, the origin of the cheese known today as Camembert is more likely to rest with the beginnings of the industrialization of the cheesemaking process at the end of the 19th century. In 1890, an engineer, M. Ridel invented the wooden box which was used to carry the cheese and helped to send it for longer distances, in particular to America where it became very popular. These boxes are still used today.
Before fungi were understood, the colour of Camembert rind was a matter of chance, most commonly blue-grey, with brown spots. From the early 20th century onwards, the rind has been more commonly pure white, but it was not until the mid-1970s that pure white became standard.
The cheese was famously issued to French troops during World War I, becoming firmly fixed in French popular culture as a result. It has many other roles in French culture, literature and history. It is now internationally known, and many local varieties are made around the world."
From experience, Camembert can be a tricky cheese to make if you haven't done so before, so please watch this tutorial that I posted on my personal blog today, for the first part of the process (milk to culturing container). Over the coming weeks I will make another video updating the progress of this batch as the mould grows over the cheese.
The recipe can be found in any good cheese making book. I highly recommend "Home Cheese Making", by Ricki Carroll. It contains the recipe that I used to make this video and all you need to know about getting started in this wonderful hobby (I am not affiliated with the New England Cheesemaking Supply Co, I just like the book)!