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Oaxaquena cheese


shelora
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Does anyone know if Oaxacan string cheese contains rennet? I have always noticed a rather acidic taste to it, that might suggest vinegar or maybe liime juice?

What about queso fresco? Rennet or no rennet?

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Well, for most cheese around here they seem to use little (or big depending on the operation) plastic bottles of "cuajo microbiano" (microbian coagulant) which a quick google shows to be an alternative to rennet. You might try it. there's a whole world out there we don't know about.

Anyway, I would suspect the same with Oaxacan cheese, specially the commercial varieties that are not made anywhere near Oaxaca. There are some web sites that give more information. I don't have them bookmarked but do have them printed out and will try to locate them later.

Rachel

Rachel Caroline Laudan

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  • 1 month later...

When I took classes at Suzanna trillings Seasons of my Heart in Oaxaca. we made cheese..and used rennet, ( piece of cows stomach dried)

I would assume that the fabulous flavor as in Mozzarella di Bufala here in Italy is the quality of the milk. not over pasteurized.

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I believe that the traditional queso quesillo uses cuajo, or rennet.

There is, however, a fascinating article on Thistle-flower cheese in an April/May issue of Gastronomica about 2-3 years ago. Written by a woman named Rosa Tovar. I have since been trying to identify any Mx cheeses that might utilize plant coagulants instead of animal ones.

Tovar theorizes that the use of plant coagulants in cheesemaking in Spain was pioneered by Jews, since the introduction of cow's stomach into milk would be in violation of the meat/milk prohibitions of the dietary laws.

And since the Conquest introduced not only the product and the technology for cheesemaking, and well as a substantial number of conversos into Mexico, it would not be surprising to find that there are some plant-coagulants in use ... somewhere.

This is fascinating stuff.

Theabroma

Sharon Peters aka "theabroma"

The lunatics have overtaken the asylum

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Great bit of sleuthing as usual Theobroma!

I managed to track down a thistle rennet cheese through a cheese purveyor in Vancouver. Queijo de Azeitao, is a raw milk sheep's cheese from Portugal.

One of the problems with finding cheese using plant rennets, is the labelling, or lack thereof.

The azeitao cheese has thistle rennet right on the label.

I've heard that stinging nettle is another plant coagulent, but have yet to find the corresponding cheese.

F.Y.I. - To bring this back to Mexico via the U.S., Topolobampo in Chicago makes all their fresh cheeses with lime juice.

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I understand that one of the scrubby nightshades - Solanum eleagnifolius (I think) - was used for cheesemaking. The berries, which look like tiny, leathery skinned chrome yellow tomatoes, are the part utilized. I'll have to recheck the sources on this before we give it a try ... this can be a nasty, but interesting, plant family.

Theabroma

Sharon Peters aka "theabroma"

The lunatics have overtaken the asylum

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