Gouda cheese production technology
As we have written, in addition to factory production, Gouda cheese is still produced manually in the Netherlands by traditional methods. The technology is as follows:
unpasteurized milk is heated to 29 degrees Celsius. Milk is then added to the milk. It is a concentrate of lactic bacteria whose primary function is to convert lactose (milk sugar) to lactic acid. Acidification of milk promotes coagulation, coagulation of milk. Acid, undesirable bacteria and other organisms are removed, thus extending the shelf life of the cheese. This is particularly important in the production of raw milk cheese. Then, the rennet is added to the milk, which helps to convert it into a precipitate, a solid matter. When the milk is thawed, after about half an hour, a cheesecake is made of a large pea size structure.
Now some of the whey is being centrifuged. Hot water is added (twice in cow's milk, curd is first warmed at 33 and after a quarter of an hour at 36 degrees), and then mixed with goat milk, the resulting young Gouda is usually immediately heated to 36 degrees.
After half an hour of slow, constant stirring of the raw material, and after a fifteen minute break, the raw material is poured into mold. Then, the very young cheese is in the form and leaves it until excess water flows out of it.
The cheese is then removed from the mold and is marked with a mark. The cheese is placed in the press and is first gently, then pressed for several hours.
After pressing, the cheese is inverted and usually after 10 to 12 hours after the start of production, sometimes until the next morning, the cheese is placed in salt water, often covered with salt additionally to prevent premature drainage.
In the salt bath, cheese is left depending on its volume for 1 to 6 days. While staying in salt salad, the cheese turns again and again. Eventually, the cheese is transferred to a special room designed to ripen. Here is the first week of the day, and later less often. The air temperature is adjusted manually in the brewery, depending on the outside air temperature. The cheese is still provided with a protective coating to prevent the formation of molds (so-called cheese coating). After four to six weeks, cheese is ready for consumption, even though it is still young. Depending on the length of stay in the waking room, cheeses are referred to as:
Young cheese (jong kaas) maturing time 4 weeks.
Young mature (jong belegen) aging period 6-8 weeks.
The mature (belegen) maturation period is 8-12 weeks.
Piquant belegen maturing time 4-6 months.
Extra belegen aging for 7-8 months.
Old cheese (oud kaas) maturing time 10-12 months.
Old-fashioned cheese (overjärig kaas) aging for more than 1 year.
Cheese stored in the maturing room no longer requires any care other than weekly turning.