Tuesday, November 15, 2011

The Year of Cheese with Suzanne McMinn

A year ago, we challenged Suzanne to make a different cheese every month and she accepted the challenge.

We had noticed her fun website and her easy going writing style, so it was a "no-brainer" for us.  (As Ricki is the "Cheese Queen," Suzanne is Her Royal Highness the Queen of the Barnyard!)

Suzanne reasoned that she would be forced to learn and grow if she had a monthly commitment.

And, it worked.  She did become a fine cheese maker and, in the process, she taught her readers and our readers how much fun it is to make your own cheese.

The year is over and now Suzanne has to focus on some new projects, but we promise to hound her relentlessly until she returns.  Meanwhile, of course, you can get your Suzanne fix anytime at Chickens in the Road.

The Year of Cheese
By Suzanne McMinn

In the past year, I’ve made huge strides in my cheesemaking thanks to my cheese challenge with New England Cheesemaking. It all began with a profile about me on the blog at New England Cheesemaking. (Check that article out if you haven’t read it!) Before my cow could say moo, I was opening my “cheese lab” to make a different cheese every month, writing about it here on my blog and on the New England Cheesemaking blog. What an experience! I want to thank Ricki, the Cheese Queen, for letting me do it, and Jim Wallace, the NEC cheese expert, for answering so many dumb questions from me, and especially Jeri Case, the “NEC Newsletter Queen” for putting up with me (and also for the day she bought all those gallons of store-bought milk to help me test one of my crazy cheese ideas).

I’m not finished making cheese, but in the coming months, I’ve got a number of other projects pressing on me, so I won’t be writing about cheese as much. But! I have one more fantastic and generous giveaway for you from the people at New England Cheesemaking. If you missed any of my “Year of Cheese” posts, please check them out!

Monterey Jack: Get to know Jack!

Making Munster: STINKY CHEESE!!!! And a very different and interesting cheesemaking process.

Gouda: A “washed curd” cheese that has become one of my favorites.

Making Romano: The cheese of emperors. You have to wait a long time for this one, but it’s worth it.

Fresh Cheese, Please: Queso fresco! A “hard” cheese that isn’t aged. It’s a chance to try out your cheese press–and eat the cheese right away.

Stirred-Curd Cheddar: A short-cut cheddar that makes a perfect alternative for the new cheesemaker wanting to try their hand at cheddar with a little less fuss.

Make It Quick with Caerphilly: A cute little cheese that is aged in less than 3 weeks.

A Cheese of My Own: What am I doing? I have no idea. I’m in the mozzarella lab!

30-Minute Burrata: A tasty continuation of my “mozzarella lab” experimentation.

Coeur a la Creme: A celebration of the Cheese Queen’s wedding with a delicious treat.

The Biggest Cheese Challenge of All: My experience teaching other people how to make cheese!

The Joy of Lactic Cheese: Lactic cheese is one of the easiest, and most versatile, of the soft cheeses. It delivers an incredible yield on just one gallon of milk. (Check out the lactic cheese recipes in that post.)

Please join me in thanking the fabulous people at New England Cheesemaking for making this year of cheese possible!

Special thanks to Beulah Petunia for her participation in this year-long project.

And thanks to Glory Bee for her milk sacrifices!


shannon i olson said...

absolutely impressive!!!! wonderful job and amazing cheese ;)

Simona said...

Congratulations, Suzanne, on completing your challenge!
By the way, gouda is also one of my favorite cheeses. In fact, I believe it is the one that I have made most often.

Emelem1 said...

I have so much pride & enjoyment from making cheese. Most of mine are simple, I'm a novice. But I truly love doing this. Looking forward to more challenges.