Scrumptious Saturday~Making Mozzarella
I had this Mozzarella recipe posted on a "retired" blog that I use to maintain on Word Press. It's one of the few things that I have not transferred over and I thought this would be a good day to share this recipe!
Two gallons of milk around 40-50 degrees F.
Two and half tsp of citric acid dissolved in 1/4 cup of cool water. (Don’t try to substitute or leave out the citric acid.)Mix dissolved citric acid into the milk, stirring for two minutes.
Heat milk to 88 degrees F.
Add 1/2 tsp. liquid rennet to 1/4 cup tap water. (Do not pour rennet directly in milk!).
Stir water/rennet mixture into milk for about 15-20 seconds.
Let sit until curd forms. (This takes about 45 minutes to an hour.)
Break curd up evenly and let set for five minutes.
Apply low heat (I use an electric stove and turn my stove on level two or three). Stir gently as you heat to approximately 100 – 108 degrees within a 15 minute period. (Temp can be taken with a dairy thermometer.)
Turn off heat and remove from hot eye. Continue to stir for 15-20 minutes.
Drain curd in colander for 10-15 minutes, flipping curds once.
Now comes the stretching part. If the cheese is not stretched very well, it will not have the texture of true Mozzarella. I have tried every method imaginable to stretch the cheese. It has to be hot enough to stretch which makes it difficult to handle. In addition, getting the cheese properly salted was also a challenge. You can put the cheese in hot whey (what is left over after you have taken the curds and drained them) and very carefully stretch the cheese being careful not to burn yourself. However, this is most difficult. You can also use hot water or hot whey and pour it over your cheese which has been placed in a shallow container and use a couple of spoons to stretch the cheese. You can add salt to your water or your whey at this point to salt the cheese.
I have found the easiest way to stretch the cheese is to simply put it in the microwave just long enough to get it soft and then use a big, stainless spoon to kneed and stretch the cheese. I can pour the salt directly on the cheese and taste it as I go to make sure that it is properly salted. (I offer this as an alternative method, knowing some folks feel strongly about the use of microwaves to heat food.)
This wonderful cheese does not have any preservatives and will only last about a week in the refrigerator. However, it does freeze well and can be frozen for later use.
The cheese in the winter time will be white and in the spring and summer will be more yellow. This is because the cows are getting beta carotene from the green grass which adds the color to the milk. In addition, I find that my cheese has a much better flavor in the spring and summer when made from milk of cows on pasture.
I get all my cheese making supplies including citric acid, rennet, and dairy thermometer from Hoegger’s Supply.
You can find Ricki Caroll's 30 Minute Mozzarella recipe here.