Friday, October 9, 2009

Clever Coffee Dripper.. sort of a silly name, eh?

I couldn't help myself. When a new coffee brewer comes on the market, it gets my attention. When a new coffee brewer made specifically for single cup brews comes on the market, it *really* gets my attention, re: Aeropress, small vac pots, manual pour-overs.. etc. Now, when a new coffee brewer made for single cup extractions comes on the the market and it's DIRT CHEAP, and get's RAVE REVIEWS from the places I look for for coffee info comes on the market, I lose all control of my credit card. I took a second loks, and then a thirteenth look.. and then it happened. I ordered it. $13.50 for the Clever Coffee Dripper (yeah, I know.. but the product is so cool!) and I hope to have it here soon. Pictures when the thing comes in.. there's a million on the web right now, though. Go take a look.

In other news, while doing some poking around at this above-mentioned item, I came across a lot of good info for coffee brewers doing stuff with weights for coffee *and* water amounts, instead of X grams for Y liquid ounces of water. It's all, in my case, 14 grams for 255 grams of hot water. As it turns out, with the fact that water expands when you heat it, it's apparently easier to just weigh the stuff on a scale as you infuse it, instead of trying to eyeball the volumes. I'm interested in using this with my Aeropress in the future, because the only downside to the press is with fresh coffee, the bloom get's so outrageous, it's hard to tell where the actually water volume is inside the tube. If I use water weight after tare'ing out the scale, I'll be much more consistent. I dragged out the brewing scale this morning and tried it, and I'll be darned if it really wasn't so! The only issue now is, the Boss will have my head of I try to keep this other scale out in the easily accessible kitchen area.

Is it just me, or is single cup brewing getting an aweful lot of attention lately? Aeropress, this new Clever dripper, the famed Clover in the big shops.. 5 years ago, all of this would have gotten you laughed out of the coffee shop.. now, it's standard issue. Heck, I was reading just the other day where there's already coffee bars with manual pour-over stations, Clever drip stations, single serve Halogen heated vac pot lineups.. etc, etc. It's not just espresso for a single serve anymore.. I like it!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The final result on the Monterry..

So, I cracked open the Monterrey Jack last night, with the assistance of Don. We actually split it in half, then split one of those pieces in half again.. the remaining 3/4's was re-waxed and put back in the fridge for sampling with a bit more ageing on it. In any case, here's a couple pics:

As you can see here (below), the one quarter that we dug into is a sizable chunk. It's about 0.5 lbs worth right there, and there's still quite a bit left of this first 1/4 for anyone interested in coming up for a try.


Some little scrub that came into the kitchen when she heard there was cheese around.. and I quote "Daddy's cheese is good!"


Here's another scrub that was in the kitchen, too.. Don! Look at him pimping that SinCity pint glass, too! 


And here's a final view of the project after the slicing, dicing and re-waxing of the other pieces. Those are back in the fridge as I type.. and we'll try them out in another few weeks. Like I said, gimme a shout if you wanna try it.


The end result of all this being, good cheese! For a mildly aged Jack, it's got a nice creamy flavor, and a slight tang from the acidity to it. It's VERY edible.. I'm quite happy with the way it came out. I'm really excited now to try the Jalapeno cheese now, since I know I did that one better than this first one.

In other news, Don also showed up with hands full.. of beer! That funky Blonde beer I reviewed a while back with the apparent Brett infection? Got a few more of those in the fridge now.. we'll see how they've fared with a bit more time on them. Looking forward to that this afternoon, tell you what.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Bandaged the Derby..

Just finished bandaging the Derby cheese, like I mentioned in the last post. It was a bit more involved and grosser than I had imagined.. sorta messy. But, it went well, and that wheel is resting easy in the beer frige along with the other two wheels. Here's a rather unexciting shot of it, all wrapped up and covered in grease, although you can't actually see the grease..

I'll have to wait a month and a half or two to open this one up, as it's raw milk.. supposed to age for two months to sell 'em legally and they think that's the required time for the acids in the cheese to nuke the harmful bacteria inside, were there any actually in there. I could open it up earlier of course, cause, well, it's *mine*.. but flavor development would be hurt, I assume. We'll see.

Fortunately, the time required to age my first cheese has passed, and this weekend may mark the opening of the first 2 lb wheel of Monterrey Jack tat I made seemingly years ago. She's gonna be sliced and quartered, with the sections not being eaten resealed up and put back to do some aging tests on. The Jalapeno can be cracked open next week, too.. good times ahead!

Still no eggs from the chickens.. it'll be 20 weeks this Thursday.. two days from now. Two seem to be ready to lay any second now, they're very big and the combs and wattles on them are fully developed and bright red. But, alas.. no breakfast yet. :) We're thinking of making a temporary wire pen enclosure around the garden to have the chicks eat the last of the vegetable stuff gone to waste, and to till and fertilize the area as well. We'll see about that in a bit..

This beer: you can see by my thumbs up, was *awesome*. Sour, highly recommended. Bring a friend to help. Thanks Timmay and Abby!

That's all for now, kids.. tune in next time. And keep clicking my Google Ad! Ya jerks..