Chef Karen's (of Blue Heron Creamery) Intro to Plant-based Cheesemaking course makes a summer appearance at Bluhouse Market & Cafe! 3 beautiful weekend days spent in gorgeous Deep Cove, get fueled by Bluhouse delicious food, and have time after the class to go for a hike. Make new friends!

Always wanted to make plant-based cheese? Trying to get off dairy? Wanting to overcome your uncertainty or lack of confidence about culturing foods? Just curious? This course is for you!

This 3 day (over 3 weekends) homework driven course, is an introduction to lactic acid fermentation in cheesemaking. The course is lecture/demo based, and leans into the science of culturing. Participants are encouraged to ask questions! The course covers:

1. Principles of cultures: "What are cultures?" "What role do they play in cheesemaking?" Participants learn how to grow and take care of 2 varieties of plant derived cultures, the variables that affect culture growth and efficacy, and what cultures do in the process of cheesemaking. 

2. The basic soft/semi-firm cheeses: participants use the cultures they have grown and sustained to culture two types of cheese curds. They move through the process of culturing, assessing the culturing process (learning how to taste, smell and recognize different stages of culturing), to making soft/semi-firm cheeses, and how to manage some of the variables that can affect cheesemaking, including temperature, humidity, pH and preventing unwelcome growth. 

3. Basic Aging techniques: participants will learn a few basic aging techniques appropriate for use with lactic-acid cultured cheeses, including brine making and washing, dry salting, and other washing methods. 

Participants are will share and taste eachother's experiments, and a Blue Heron Cheese tasting is included on the last day of the course, which is the 'show and tell" day!

Participants should bring notebooks, and be prepared to take notes, course handouts are provided via email, and after the conclusion of each class day, but note taking is still important. 

On the first day, students should bring 2, 500ml mason jars, for taking home culture making materials which will be provided. 

Course Materials required: 

Cheese molds (alternatives will be discussed in class) can be ordered here (be sure to order small ones: www.homesteadjunction.ca Orders will be shipped to participants so, be sure to order early

Bamboo mats (1-2), OR bamboo or wood (lightly used and never used in preparation of animal material) boards

Measuring spoons and cups

tight weave sieve for straining cultures and curds

These materials are not required for first day of class, but will be necessary for homework. 

Link for course registration and tickets: www.eventbrite.ca/e/intro-to-plant-based-cheesemaking-with-chef-karen-mcathy-of-blue-heron-tickets-36625488823

Saturday, August 19th and Saturday August 26th are the first two dates of the 3 day course. The third date will be collectively set by the class at the end of the first day of the course.