American Farmstead Cheese

Written by Paul Kindstedt (a professor of the department of Nutrition and Food Sciences of the University of Vermont) along with the Vermont Cheese Council , this is a book that tries to blend the scientific and artisnal aspects of cheese making. While a good scientific understanding of cheese making is important to produce consistently good cheese it is difficult to describe the art of cheese making in a book.

Chapters 1 and 2 start with a good background how and why there are so many different types of cheese given that they all start out from essentially the same product – milk. This is followed by a chapters on milk and culture, the body and heart of cheese. The cheese making process is broken down into 8 basic steps and each step is well described. There is a emphasis on the hazards and safety of cheese making that I think borders on the paranoid but having said that cleanliness is of the utmost importance. Then, at the end there is one chapter, my favorite, on the art of cheese making.

This is not a how to book with recipes and step by step instructions, it is a book targeted at established cheese makers or cheese enthusiasts who want to understand the principles of making good cheese in a small business setting.

Overall I enjoyed this book and would definitely recommend it to anyone in the cheese industry or anyone who is thinking about entering it.

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