Thursday, September 19, 2019

Raclette Cheese (Recipe and Instructions)

Today I'm posting my recipe and instructions for Raclette Cheese. This is one of my favourite cheeses because it's used in a Raclette machine to melt and pour on top of all sorts of delicious goodies! Alex and I have a tradition where we have a Raclette dinner every New Year's Eve.

"Back in the days, Swiss shepherds from the Valais region needed to bring food up to the Alps that was relatively cheap and wouldn’t spoil easily in the hot summer months. So they brought cheese and potatoes. While the potatoes roasted in the fire, a big piece of cheese was put close to the fire. Once it started melting, the cheese was taken away and scraped onto the baked potatoes. This was not only filling and nourishing but also delicious. In French ‘to scrape’ translates to ‘racler’ and this is where the term Raclette comes from." (

Whatever way you slice it, it's basically melted cheese on whatever food you love. It's a fun meal to have. We found our Raclette machine at a thriftstore for $10 and we've been using it every year since. I'm so happy I can now make the Raclette cheese at home, because it's quite expensive at the store! My wheel should be ready in mid-December, so we may have Raclette for Christmas dinner this year.

Here's how you make it!

Raclette Cheese (for a printable version, click here)
(Recipe courtesy of Gavin Webber)
Yield: 1 kg wheel


10 liters whole milk
1/16 tsp Brevibacterium Linens Culture
1/8 tsp Alp D Culture
1/2 tsp Calcium Chloride
1/4 tsp double rennet
Cool filtered water


Stage 1: Mixing The Ingredients
Stage 2: Caring for the curds
Stage 3: Molding, Pressing and Brining
Stage 4: Drying and Aging

Stage 1: Mixing The Ingredients

1. In a double boiler, heat the milk to 88F or 31C.

2. Add the Brevibacterium Linens, then the AlpD Culture and let sit 5 minutes at 88F or 31C.

As you can see, the Brevi Linens are orange in colour. This particular culture develops an orange/red rind around the cheese and gives it flavour and aroma.

This is how the cheese should age, the rind should be an orange/red colour as this photo shows.

3. Stir well for 2 minutes then let ripen for 1 hour and 15 minutes, holding the temperature at 88F or 31C.

4. At about the 1 hour and 10 minute mark, prepare your Calcium Chloride by mixing it with 1/4 cup of cool filtered water. Mix your rennet with 1/4 cup of cool filtered water.

5. Add the Calcium Chloride and stir for 1 minute. Add the rennet and stir for no more than 1 minute.

6. Let sit for 50 minutes holding the temperature at 88F or 31C.

Stage 2: Caring for the curds

7. Check for a clean break. Insert your knife into the curd, if it breaks open a little and comes out clean, you have a clean break.

8. Gently cut the curds with a balloon whisk, using an up and down, side to side and scooping motion.

9. Let heal for 5 minutes

10. Gently stir for 20 minutes, still holding the temperature at 88F or 31C. Let sit for 5 minutes.

11. Meanwhile, heat 3 liters of water to 145F or 63C.

12. Using a strainer and ladle, remove 11 cups of whey.

13. Replace the whey with 11 cups of hot water to wash the curds. Washing the curds lowers the acidity to make a smoother taste. Your temperature should now be at 100F or 38C. 

As you can see, my temperature was at 102F. In order to bring it down to 100F, I removed some whey and poured in a little bit of cool water.

14. Stir for 10 minutes then let sit for 5 minutes.

Stage 3: Molding, Pressing and Brining

15. Drain the curd into a cheesecloth-lined mold. Pull the cheesecloth around the curd to make sure there are no wrinkles, then put on your follower.

16. Press at 11 pounds for 15 minutes.

After 15 minutes, your wheel is SO SO fragile, take care of it very gently!

17. Flip, re-dress and press at 11 pounds for 30 minutes.

18. Flip, re-dress and press at 22 pounds for 1 hour.

19. Flip, re-dress and press at 33 pounds for 12 hours.

20. Put your wheel into a brine solution in the cheese cave for 10 hours, flipping at the 5 hour mark.

Stage 4: Drying and Aging

21. Air dry for 24 hours, flipping it at the 12 hour mark.

22. Your Raclette will age in a ripening box in the cheese cave at 50F or 10C. This is my set up. I use a tupperware container large and deep enough to hold a small dish. That little piece of wet paper towel is put into the tupperware to keep the ripening box humid. I then place a bamboo mat on top of the little dish for air circulation; then my wheel of cheese on top. There is a binder clip on the side of the box to hold the lid from sealing, this also helps with air circulation.

Wash your wheel on the 3rd day, then flip and wash every other day for 1 month; then flip and wash weekly. You are washing the wheel to encourage the Brevi Linens to develop the orange rind. To see my video on how to wash your cheese, click here

The total ripening time is 12 weeks then your wheel should be ready to taste!

Note: Every time you take your cheese out to flip and/or wash, always replace everything inside (dish, bamboo mat, wet piece of paper towel) and wipe down the container and lid. Otherwise, little mould bunnies will be secretly forming and contaminating your wheel!

I have multiple amounts of mats and dishes. It's easy to get lazy and skip this step (I've done it and regretted it!) but having a failed cheese is much worse!


Magic Love Crow said...

Thank you Rain, for all you put on this blog!!! Truly appreciated! Big Hugs!

Rain said...

Thanks Stacy, I really appreciate your support!! :)

Daniel Lamothe said...

Hello Rain.

I am preparing do do a batch of Raclette nest week-end and I am very exited.

I have rennet from Glengarry and you are using double rennet in your recepe. Di I have to put more than 1/4 tsp by using regular rennet?

Thank you

Daniel Lamothe

Rain said...

Hi Daniel! :) I'm so glad to hear you're making the Raclette! I hope it turns out well for you, and I hope you're prepared for that smell!!! It's so strong! :) I used double rennet in this recipe, so if you use regular rennet, DOUBLE the measurement! So you would use an 1/2 of a tsp of regular rennet.