Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Home Made Mozzarella Cheese

Mozzarella is on of the mostcommon cheeses you see in kitchen. Anybody that has tasted fresh mozzarellawill attest that there is absolutely no resemblance in taste and texture to supermarketmozzarella sold in brick form or sliced. Luckily, it is fairly easy to make athome. Give it a try, it might become a regular on “To-do” list. It is on mine.Also, there is one more benefit in making this cheese at home: the leftover wheycan be turned into great fresh ricotta cheese.

Place 4liters of whole milk into a stainless steel pot.  Measure all of thefollowing ingredients into four individual containers.  This will allowyou to make the cheese without worrying about measurements.
2 tsp. citricacid dissolved in 3/4 cup of water
1/4 tsp.Lipase powder dissolved in 2 Tbs. of water
1/8 tsp.rennet dissolved in 1 cup of water
1/2 tsp.flaked salt (optional)
(useonly distilled water)

Making the Cheese
Place the pot of milk on the stove over medium heat. It is important thatyou heat the milk slowly.  Slowly pour in the citric acid and mild lipasepowder while you gently stir. Heat slowly until the milk reaches 88 °F. Stir every few minutes to prevent scorching the milk on the bottom of thepot. You will begin to see the curd develop.
Once the milk reaches 88 °F stir in the rennet and water mixture. Continuestirring every few minutes until the milk reaches 105 °F.
Developing the Curd
Remove from the heat and let the milk set, covered, for 20 minutes at 105 °F. Curdwill now be fully separated.
Cooking the Curd
Use a slotted spoon or strainer to transfer the curd to a microwave safedish. If the curd is too soft to transfer, let the milk sit a few moreminutes. Pour off as much of the whey as you can. Gently press the curdstogether with the spoon and force more whey out of them. Squeeze out and drainas much whey as possible.
Placethe curd in the microwave on high for one minute. Remove and press thecurds again to force out more whey. The cheese should begin to masstogether and become sticky. 
After removing as much whey as possible put the bowl back for another 30seconds.
Add theflaked salt a little at a time and knead the cheese with a spoon as you wouldbread dough. It will become smooth and shiny. Place the curd back into themicrowave and heat on high for one more minute.  Remove from oven anddrain any remaining whey.  This time your cheese will be too hot tohandle, about 130 °F.

Stretching the Cheese
Knead the cheese again until it sticks to the spoon and pulls away from thebowl.
When the cheese begins to stretch like taffy, it is almost done.  You canhave some fun now by pulling and stretching the cheese until it is completelycooled.  This is an important step.  Stretching will make the cheesefirm and stringy.  If you prefer a softer texture don't stretch as much.
Place the cheese in an air tight container or wrap in plastic wrap andrefrigerate.  Use this cheese within one week or store it in the freezerfor up to one month. If your cheese is too soft to shred for pizza, place it inthe freezer then shred and use it partly frozen.
Ready for rennet addition.

The curd has formed...

The curd is ready for microwave oven. Notice the green whey that I will turn into ricotta later.

First heating...

Second heating...

First kneading

Cheese is ready to be formed into bocconcini. 

Four liters of 3.25% milk gave me just over 1 pound of mozzarella.


Anonymous said...

I have enjoyed your recipe sharing and musings on meals that you have prepared. I have one question and that is In what type of a store do you find the rennet, citric acid and lipase used in your Mozzarella recipe? Thanks. Ross.

Jerry said...

Hi Ross, thanks for compliments.
I buy all my supplies on Internet from New England Cheesemaking Supply Company. http://www.cheesemaking.com/
If you are a beginner go for the kit. It has everything you need for 30 batches of cheese. I bought individually because I had all the equipment but no chemicals. Don’t be discouraged if you don’t succeed first time. I needed 2 tries because I didn’t follow the recipe to the letter. Have fun, you will be amazed how different this cheese is from supermarket stuff.

Anonymous said...

JERRY; Thanks for the link to the Cheese making site....very interesting. I will have to get back to them in the New Year and get myself one of the kits as you suggested. I have wanted to try this for some time and this has spurred me on to getting it done. I am sure it would go well with the one pot bread recipe that you had posted awhile back which I have also been itching to try. I will post back to you in the future and let you know if I was successful. Thanks again. Ross.