FRED TAYLOR

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Stanley
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FRED TAYLOR

Post by Stanley » 29 Sep 2017, 13:48

FRED TAYLOR

It's the 8th of September and I see from the BET that my old friend Fred Taylor celebrated his 90th birthday on the 5th. Thank you BET because I have to confess that as I became less mobile I lost track of him, shameful I know, after all he's nine years older than me!
I first met Fred over fifty years ago when ASDA, the new owners of West Marton Dairies, bought the cheese factory at Sedbergh where Fred was the cheese-maker. I was a driver at West Marton and sometimes had occasion to go up there. I took to Fred the first time I met him. A Dalesman to his backbone he never lost the soft Cumbrian accent that sits so well on the ear. I soon found out that his cheese was good as well!
Move on a few years and Fred was at Marton which had been converted from a bottling dairy to cheese. He came as cheese-maker and from then on I saw him on a daily basis. He soon moved to Salterforth and in the fullness of time married Newton Pickles' daughter Joyce which meant there was another connection. Sadly for all of us, but Fred in particular, Joyce died before her time and Fred was a hero, he looked after her wonderfully in her last illness, par for the course, he is that kind of man. Anything I know about cheese, I learned from my time at Marton and especially from Fred. As any of you who know me is aware, I am a nosey beggar and always ask questions.
As I suspect you know, all the best cheeses are pressed into moulds after making and once they have become firm, they are taken out and bandaged using a variant of flour and water as paste. Then they are stored individually on shelves in a controlled temperature, ideally on Sycamore shelves as it is naturally germicidal. They are turned regularly to help distribute the moisture and in the process of maturing grow what Fred called their 'overcoats', a covering of beneficial mould which is natural and part of the maturing process. I once asked Fred to pick me a full Wensleydale cheese from what he considered to be a good batch. I bought it off the dairy and Fred looked after it until he judged it was at its peak. I have to tell you that it was the best cheese I have ever tasted!
Unfortunately, during this process, the cheeses lose weight and in a commercial world this is profit! The industry's answer was to introduce the waxing of cheeses which stopped the weight loss but also the mould and how well the cheese matures. Fred didn't like this but knew he had to move with the times.
I could go on but I have to stop. I am so glad that Fred is alive and well and evidently enjoying himself, he deserves it. I am glad I can count such a good man as my friend!

Image

Fred in 1983 at Greenfield's at Goosnargh where he was adviser.
Stanley Challenger Graham
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chinatyke
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Re: FRED TAYLOR

Post by chinatyke » 30 Sep 2017, 02:59

Did you ever use the 'artificial' rennin, Rennilase enzyme?
Rennin (Rennet) is extracted from unweaned calf stomachs and is the traditional enzyme of choice for cheesemaking and I guess Fred would have preferred this. Rennilase is produced from microbial sources and is a much more standardised product and doesn't involve killing calves.

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Re: FRED TAYLOR

Post by Stanley » 01 Oct 2017, 05:59

As far as I know we always used natural rennet at Marton but of course I could be wrong. What always intrigued me was the care that was taken in managing the starter cultures which were treated like favoured pets. They were rested, exposed to just enough natural infection to keep them vigorous and some of them were kept going for years. When replacements were needed I think they came from Denmark..... Just a small quantity of powder that was added to milk and incubated.
Stanley Challenger Graham
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"Beware of certitude" (Jimmy Reid)
The floggings will continue until morale improves!

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