I’ve loved the subtle taste of Edam for many years. So why not learn how to make Edam?
I first tried it on a visit to The Netherlands way back in 1986. We visited a cheese factory on the outskirts of Amsterdam on after a pleasant ride through the dutch countryside on our bicycles. It was a sight to behold.
The cheese was made in huge stainless steel vats and the curd was washed with warm water after draining, pressed, then brined in an equally massive vat. Then put in a machine that applied the traditional red wax coating.
It was quite an impressive operation.
Who would have thought that 30 years later I would make the same cheese in the same style, but at a much smaller scale?
It was a pleasure to make, with the steps quite simple. I modified the recipe found in Debra Amrein-Boyes book, 200 Easy Homemade Cheese Recipes, and then reduced it down to a manageable 10 litres. Edam is a washed curd cheese that is mild compared to cheddar, without sharpness due to the lower acid levels during the cheesemaking process.
So without further ado, here is the Edam video tutorial followed by the written recipe.
Here is the recipe for how to make Edam.
- 10 Litres (10 quarts) whole milk (about 3.8% fat).
- 1/8th teaspoon Mesophilic culture (MO30)
- 2.5ml (½ tspn) liquid rennet IMCU 190, diluted in ¼ cup non-chlorinated water.
- 2.5ml (½ tspn) Calcium Chloride, diluted in ¼ cup non-chlorinated water.
- Cool saturated brine solution (18%).
- Cheese wax
Mould – 165mm cheese mould
- Sanitise all equipment.
- Warm your milk to 31°C (88°F), stirring gently whilst bringing up to temperature. Turn off the heat.
- Sprinkle culture over surface of milk and allow to rehydrate for 2 minutes. Stir thoroughly in an up and down motion without breaking the surface of the milk. Cover and allow to rest for 30 minutes at the target temperature.
- Add the Calcium Chloride solution and mix well.
- Add the rennet solution to the milk and mix thoroughly using the same up and down motion for no more than 2 minutes. Cover and allow to set for 40 minutes.
- Check for a clean break. If necessary, leave for another 5 minutes then check again.
- Cut curd into 1.25 cm (½ inch) cubes. Let stand for 5 minutes for the curds to heal.
- Turn on heat to low and slowly warm the curds to 33°C (92°F) over a period of 20 minutes. Stir slowly and constantly during this period. Don’t heat too quickly. Allow the curds to settle for 5 minutes.
- Reserving the whey using a second clean pot, drain off the whey to expose the curds. I use a sieve and ladle to ensure that I only drain out the whey. Do not throw out this whey as you will need it later during the process.
- Replace the whey with an equal amount of warm water (about 50°C (122°F)) to the original level of the whey to bring the curds to 37°C (99°F). Stir continuously for 30 minutes, maintaining the target temperature.
- Let the curds settle and begin to mat together. Drain off into a cheesecloth lined colander allow to drain for 1 minute. Bundle up the curd filled cheesecloth and transfer to your cheese mould. Fold the cheesecloth over the top and put the follower on top.
- Place the mould in the cheese press and press at 12kg (22 lbs) for 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, warm the reserved whey to 50°C (122°F). Remove the cheese from the press, gently unwrap and immerse the cheese into the hot whey for 20 minutes. Turn the cheese once to ensure that the entire cheese is exposed to the whey.
- Remove the cheese and wrap in cheesecloth and place in the cheese mould. Cover with the excess cheesecloth and replace the follower. Press at 22.5 kg (50 lbs) for 6 hours. Remove from press, turn and re wrap in cheesecloth and press as before at 22.5 kg (50 lbs) for 7 hours.
- Remove cheese from press and unwrap. Place in the saturated brine solution for 12 hours, turning over once at 6 hours.
- Remove from the brine and let air dry on a cheese mat at room temperature for 2-3 days. Turn a couple of times daily until touch dry.
- Coat the cheese in 2 layers of cheese wax. Ripen at 12°C (54°F) and 85% humidity, turning weekly for even ripening.
- The Edam is ready to eat in 2 months, but can be matured longer for a stronger flavour.
Normally this cheese is pressed in a bullet shaped mould with rounded follower to create a cannonball shaped cheese, however this will not affect the final taste and structure of the cheese. The day 2 weight for this recipe was 1.281 kg (2.8 lbs)
So now you know how to make Edam, please give it a try. It should turn out to be an amazing cheese! Let me know how it turns out.