Cheese and Dragonflies
Hey, it’s an interesting combination- don’t knock it untill you’ve tried it. I’ve been pretty busy at work lately and haven’t had much time to blog. So I missed posting on a couple of things from Memorial Day weekend.
A couple of months ago, I made my first cheddar cheese. These should age from 2 to 6 months before being eaten. I was thinking about trying to be patient and age it for longer, but then I realized that if it hadn’t worked out well, I’d have invested mych more time before being able to make alterations. I’m glad I tried it. The flavor was good, though not as sharp as I’d like. That part was expected. Sharpness develops with age, and I knew I was sacrificing that for quicker feedback.
The texture left a lot to be desired. The cheddar was way to dry and crumbly. Now, I know that a cheddar, particularly a well-aged one, is supposed to be crumbly, but this was too much too soon. The troubleshooting section in my cheesemaking book said that this could be the result of handling the curds too vigorously. Since it was raining the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend, I made a second cheddar, taking this into consideration. For now, the two-month aging timetable (or perhaps even a little less) seems about right until this is worked out.
Monroe County, Wisconsin
The next day, I took off for west-central Wisconsin for a little collecting. I had a specific quarry in mind: the Northern Barrens Tiger Beetle (Cicendela patruela), a subspecies endemic to that part of the state. Alas, I was not to find it. But I had a great time collecting and got to see a dragonfly species new to me: the Chalk-fronted Corporal (Libellula julia). It even posed for me.