How to make the right cottage cheese

Are there any additional requirements for raw milk for curd production?

Low protein content of raw milk can be the main reason for low curd yields. It is important to know not only the protein content of the raw milk, but also the ratio of albumin to casein. Such analysis is carried out by specialized laboratories. You should not store milk at the plant before processing, “ripe” milk for cottage cheese is not suitable, as the yield of the finished product decreases.

What pasteurization modes are used in the production of cottage cheese?

It is recommended to use pasteurization temperature of milk 82 ± 2°C with a delay of 15-20 seconds. These modes, on the one hand, have minimal effect on the protein, on the other hand – allow guaranteed destruction of residual microflora. It is recommended to feed the mixture into the coagulator at the fermentation temperature. This avoids recolonization.

What is the difference between the production of traditional curd on automated lines and in VC tubs?

factory modern cottage

The production of traditional curd on automated lines is the most progressive and perfect method in terms of microbiological indicators. These lines allow you to get cottage cheese with shelf life up to 30 days. The automated method uses only mesophilic cultures with high or medium gas formation to ensure that the clot pops up (when producing curd with acid method) during heating. Both frozen and lyophilized cultures can be used at a fermentation temperature of 26-32°C. They should be stored at not more than minus 45°C for frozen starters, since some of them have strains which “wake up and begin working” already at minus 40°C.

In Russia, a large volume of traditional curd is produced in VC tubs. The technology is complicated because the process is open. Enterprises with high production culture achieve striking results in microbiology and taste of cottage cheese.

For VC baths can be used and mesophilic-thermophilic starters (fermentation temperature 32-36 °C) and purely mesophilic (28-32 °C). The process of fermentation is influenced by: proper selection of the culture, temperature and control of the end of the process. It is not recommended to use “fast” cultures for overnight fermentation. If the milk mixture is too long in the bath, the protein goes into soluble form and is lost in the whey. It is also strictly forbidden to reduce the dosage of the starter because of the risk of bacteriophage development. The acidity varies depending on what flavors you want your curd to taste like. And this is where the professionalism and creativity of the technologist come into play.

What problems can arise in the production of cottage cheese by separation?

This type of curd has a soft, smeary consistency and is usually produced from skimmed milk with subsequent normalization (if necessary) with cream.

An average of 4.4-4.8 kg of milk must be processed to produce 1 kg of curd. A large proportion of the whey proteins are transferred to whey. Adding COM to the normalized mixture will significantly increase the yield of the finished product.

Pasteurization temperature in the manufacture of separated curd is high – in the range of 90-95°C with a delay of 2-5 minutes for fixation on casein micelles whey proteins and minimize their losses during separation.

In the production of separated cottage cheese an acid-rhuby method of protein coagulation is used, so it is important to choose the right combination of enzyme and starter culture to obtain a clot with maximum density.

The rennet should work well in high temperature pasteurized milk, be resistant to an acidic environment and not produce bitterness in the finished product.

The optimum pH value for separation is 4.5-4.55. The choice of starter cultures will depend on the raw material used, the specific equipment, the technological process and, of course, the desired quality of the final product. The cultures should have minimum acidification, and should not form bitterness during storage of the curd (14 days or more).

Often manufacturers refuse flavor-forming cultures in the production of separated cottage cheese for fear of “bombardment” of the packaging. Studies have shown that thermization at 60°C (before separation) inhibits gas-forming bacteria, which helps avoid bloating during storage.

separator

Which separator to choose for the production of cottage cheese

When it comes to producing cottage cheese, choosing the right separator is critical to ensuring the quality and consistency of the final product. There are a few key factors to consider when selecting a separator for cottage cheese production.

One important consideration is the type of milk being used. Cottage cheese can be made from a variety of different types of milk, including whole milk, skim milk, and even goat’s milk. Depending on the type of milk being used, different types of separators may be more suitable. For example, separators that are designed for high-fat milk may not work as well for skim milk.

Another factor to consider is the desired texture of the cottage cheese. Some separators are better suited for producing a dry, crumbly cottage cheese, while others are better for a creamier texture. Additionally, the size of the curd can be adjusted by selecting the appropriate separator.

It’s also important to consider the volume of cottage cheese being produced. For smaller-scale operations, a tabletop separator may be sufficient, while larger-scale operations may require a larger, industrial-grade separator.

Finally, cost is always a consideration when selecting any piece of equipment for a production process. While it may be tempting to opt for the least expensive option, it’s important to consider the long-term costs of maintenance and repairs, as well as the impact on the quality and consistency of the final product. Selecting the right separator for cottage cheese production involves considering a variety of factors, including the type of milk being used, the desired texture of the final product, the volume of production, and cost. By carefully considering these factors and selecting a separator that is well-suited to the specific needs of the operation, producers can ensure that they are producing high-quality cottage cheese that meets their customers’ expectations.

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