The Permaculture Podcast

    1727 – Mastering Cheesemaking with Gianaclis Caldwell

    Gianaclis Caldwell is the author of a modern classic on cheese production, Mastering Artisan Cheesemaking from Chelsea Green Publishing, and her new book to help get anyone started, Mastering Basic Cheesemaking from New Society Publishers.


    Click here to download the episode. | Open Player in New Window

    These books and her expertise form the basis for our conversation today about animal cheeses, whether you start with goat, sheep, or cow milk. I dive in with all my questions about starting supplies; expected yields; soft versus hard cheeses; the different types of cheese; and an exploration of rennet, including three types to look for and one to avoid.

    As Gianaclis joined me previously for Episode 1724 – Holistic Goat Care, we begin with a brief overview of her background and then get cheesy.

    Find out more about her and her books at

    As you heard during this conversation, I’m really inspired by people like Gianaclis that take these ideas that at first seem so complex, and break down the mystery into easy steps we can follow. Sure, we might make mistakes or have some failures, but we can take what we learn and try again. Using what she shares with us, we can start with a $4 gallon of store bought commercial cow milk and make our first pound of cheese. If we want, then we can seek out grass-fed organic or raw milk, try sheep or goat milk, and see how that changes what we get. But if we don’t want to, we never have to. We can keep using that same grocery store jug while still getting something better than store bought.

    Though I haven’t made my own cheese yet, as my children look at me with that “Dad? Really?” look every time I bring it up, I feel comfortable and confident that when we do get to it, we’ll wind up with not only some great cheese but also a fond memory.

    Those experiences are the ones we need to create the world we want to live in, and so I encourage each of you to keep playing, in the kitchen, in the garden, field, and forest, to find those moments that speak to you, add to your set of skills, and help you to be who you are called to.

    If there is any way I can help you on that journey, get in touch.


    The Permaculture Podcast
    P.O. Box 16
    Dauphin, PA 17018.

    Also, during this conversation, I mentioned making a yogurt fermented soda. I was inspired to do that based on a recipe in Rachel Kaplan’s Urban Homesteading, which you’ll find at

    From here the next episode out on October 7 for Patreon supporters and general release on October 10, is my interview with Viktor Zaunders, on, a service for directly connecting farmers and consumers.

    Until them, spend each day taking care of Earth, yourself, and returning the surplus to your community.

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    Gianaclis Caldwell
    Pholia Farm Dairy
    Mastering Basic Cheesemaking (New Society Publishers)
    Mastering Artisan Cheesemaking (Chelsea Green Publishing)
    American Cheese SocietyVern Caldwell

    Holistic Goat Care (Chelsea Green)
    1724 – Holistic Goat Care with Gianaclis Caldwell

    Similar posts
    • 1724 – Holistic Goat Care with Gianaclis Caldwell here to download the episode. | Open Player in New Window My guest is the author, cheesemaker, and goatherd Gianaclis Caldwell of Pholia Farm Dairy. She joins me to talk about her latest book Holistic Goat Care from Chelsea Green Publishing. Using that complete approach we talk about goats on a farm and homestead, [...]

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