Making Delicious Mozzarella Cheese
Have you ever made cheese? It is such a fun and rewarding project in the kitchen so I though I would share with you how to make one of the easiest beginner’s cheeses - mozzarella.
There is no aging time....meaning you get to eat it right away....yay! And most of the equipment and ingredients you may already have and, if not, they are easy to find.
Fresh mozzarella is a wonderful cheese to pack for snacks or lunches. I love to grate it to make delicious lasagnas and homemade pizzas. There is nothing quite like cutting into a bubbling lasagna with strings of mozzarella trailing behind....it’s the simple pleasures isn’t it?
Cheese making was super intimidating for me at first, but once I finally took the plunge and tried it, I was hooked. This creative, sciencey, magic that happens in the kitchen makes for something delicious that you simply can’t find anywhere else.
So Let Make Some Mozzarella....
Stainless Steel Pot Large Enough to Hold (and Stir Up) One Gallon of Milk
Two Small Bowls
A Long Knife to Cut the Curd With
Stainless Steel Spoon
Strainer for Collecting the Curds
1 cup cold non-chlorinated water with 1 1/2 tsp citric acid dissolved in it
1/4 cup cold non-chlorinated water with 1/2 tsp liquid rennet or 1 tablet rennet dissolved in it
1 gallon of cold milk (full fat tastes the best, but you can use skimmed too)
1/4 cup non-iodized salt
Sanitize all your equipment by running it through the dishwasher or rinsing in extremely hot water.
Acidify the milk by placing the dissolved citric acid in the bottom of your pot. Quickly pour in one gallon of cold milk (straight from the fridge) and stir throughly.
Heat the milk over medium-high to 90 degrees stirring as needed to keep it from scorching.
Stir the rennet solution into the milk for no longer than 30 seconds.
Let the milk rest, covered, for five minutes and then look for a curd to have formed by inserting your knife into the center.
Cut the curd into 1 inch cubes in a criss-cross pattern and then at a diagonal.
Cook the curd slowly over medium heat taking it from 90 to 110 degrees. As it is cooking, slowly and gently stir the curds taking them from the outside and pulling them to the center.
Once the curds reach 110 degrees, cover them and let them sit for 5 minutes.
Remove the curds from the whey with a strainer allowing the whey to drain from the curds as you lift them out. Place curds in a bowl draining any whey that may have accumulated in the bottom of the bowel.
Heat whey to between 175-190 degrees.
Dissolve the salt into the whey.
Place some of your curds in a ladle and reinsert into the heated whey for 10-30 seconds.
Remove the curds and stretch three times with your gloved hands forming a ball.
Repeat until all the curds have been stretched and balled. You can make the balls as big or little as you want.
Your cheese is now ready to enjoy....you can eat it, grate it, or save it for later. Don’t tell anyone, but the first time I made mozzarella cheese, I ate all of it (with help from some little people) before it had time to cool. Good times:)
If you have more self control than me, though, and want to save it, know that you can put it into a covered container with a little whey or wrap tightly in plastic wrap.
It will keep in the fridge only a couple days before it starts to get slimy (which would be so sad!), so be sure to use it quickly. Trust me, though, that won’t be a problem:)
If you want to save it to use whenever you need it, you can also grate it and freeze it to sprinkle on anything and everything.
Enjoy!!! Oh, and please send me an email and tell me all about your cheese making adventure. I can’t wait to hear from you <3