Colwick cheese was invented in the 18th century, and is an example of a curd cheese. As it forms in the cheesecloth the cheese forms a dish and this is often filled with honey or other ingredients to make a delicious cheese.
It is simple to make really. Of course Belvoir Creamery, who sell it commercially from their red poll cattle, have the process off to a ‘T’, but I couldn’t resist a try.
Basically it is a simple curd, placed into a cheese cloth in a ring. As the whey drains the cheese sticks to the cloth and then it forms this sort of hole, which can be filled with anything you like.
4 litres whole milk
5 drops of rennet
150 ml homemade yoghurt as a starter
Heat the milk to 33C
Add the starter
Leave for an hour
Add the rennet
Wait for a curd
Spoon the curds (Didn’t even cut them) into a cheesecloth in a large ring.
Leave to drain for 24 hours
Salt the outside of the cheese and leave to dry for 2 – 3 days.
This cheese seems to be very wet at first, and it can take many days to start to dry properly. Just keep on removing the whey as best you can every time and you will eventually be rewarded with a great cheese. I didn’t bother putting anything in the dish, and found the ‘hole’ to diminish after a couple of days drying.
That said, the cheese was completely gorgeous to taste. It was bland at first, and within a couple of seconds you are surprised by a creamy flavour that seems to explode in the mouth.
Colwick cheese is a really great addition to your repertoire – easy, quick and very flavoursome. We found the yield was good, and the heavy salting didn’t seem to make any real difference to the flavour, probably because the excess salt was washed away by the escaping whey.