Thursday, February 18, 2010

30 Minute Mozzarella

Did you know that in 30 minutes you can make homemade fresh mozzarella in your own kitchen? It is great fun for kids and they finally get to see what these "curds and whey" are that they keep reading about.

I ordered my supplies from the New England Cheesemaking Supply Company They have a homemade mozzarella kit that has everything you need to make mozzarella (and other cheeses as well)

Here are the steps that are provided with the kit.

Dissolve 1/4 rennet tablet in 1/4 cup cool, chlorine free water.

Dissolve 1 1/2 teaspoons citric acid into 1 cup cool chlorine free water.

Make sure your milk is not ultra pasteurized.
It can be skim or whole or a mixture.
I also like to use hormone free milk because only very rarely can I find mozzarella in the stores that states that it is hormone free.

Pour 1 gallon of milk into a large pot.

Stir constantly as you add the citric acid solution.

Stir constantly and heat to 90 degrees F.

Pretend like this says 90 degrees. Oops. This is where I start saying things like my thermometer must be at least 4 degrees off.

Remove the pot from the burner and slowly stir in the rennet solution with an up and down motion for approximately 30 seconds.

Cover the pot and leave it undisturbed for 5 minutes.

The curd should look like custard and clearly separate from the whey.
If the curd is soft or the whey is milky let sit for a few more minutes.

Cut the curd with a knife (I don't have a picture of this).
Place the pot back on the stove and heat to 105 degrees F while slowly moving the curds with a spoon.

Take off the burner and continue to slowly stir for 2-5 minutes.

Ladle the curds into a large microwaveable bowl, draining off as much of the whey as you can without pressing the curds too much.

Microwave for 1 minute.
Put on rubber gloves. The first time I tried this I didn't have rubber gloves, and used latex instead. This is not recommended. It is very hot!! Gently fold the curds into one piece.
Add cheese salt to taste. So far I've tried 1 Tablespoon which was too much and 1 teaspoon was too little.

Microwave for another 30 seconds. Drain again and stretch the curd. It must be 135 degrees to stretch properly. If not hot enough, microwave for another 30 seconds.

Stretch the cheese by pulling like taffy until it is smooth and shiny.
The more you work the firmer it will be.
Shape into your desired shape (ball, log, braid, string cheese, etc)

Submerge in ice water.
This step protects the silky texture and keeps it from becoming grainy.

The final product. Slice or shred and Enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. Carol, Just made the cheese! It's very tasty. Not very "stretchy" because I couldn't quite get my microwave hot enough for a consistent temp throughout. (It's actually the trailer microwave after ours died. Keep saying we're going to replace it....) It is very good though. I used 2 t of cheese salt and that seem sufficient. Thank you so much! Tracey