Homemade Mozzarella

As Kelly mentioned last week we recently had a whole day of cheese making. We had been wanting to make ricotta and homemade mozzarella for ages. We decided to go ahead with the ricotta at least. The day before, I decided, what the heck? Go big or go home. So, I went and bought a mozzarella cheese making kit.

Here is what happened:

The kit said to use raw or pasteurized milk but not ultra pasteurized. I thought that Whole Foods would be my best bet. I even asked the cheese guy what he recommended. He said he too had tried to make homemade mozzarella and it never worked. If the cheese guy couldn’t even do it, it really wasn’t looking good for me. He showed me all the milks that he tried with(and failed). So I used Kalona whole milk.

Here is what you’ll need

In one bowl of water dissolve the rennet. In the other bowl dissolve the citric acid

Heat the milk to 85 degrees

Add the citric acid

Heat the milk to 105 degrees and add the rennet water

Cover the pot and allow to sit for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes the curds should look like this. So far, so good.

Drain the whey. At this point, things were still looking good.

Transfer the mozzarella to a bowl and microwave. This is where things started to go wrong for us.

After microwaving you are supposed to knead the cheese until it is smooth and shiny. Our cheese never got smooth or shiny. Sad face.

At this point we decided to taste the cheese. Guess what? It tasted just like mozzarella. It didn’t have the right look or texture, but the taste was right. We even used the cheese for a salad recipe which we will post tomorrow. So even though it didn’t have the right look or texture we still considered it a semi success.

After making the salad I put the extra cheese in a bowl with some leftover whey. When I went to use it a couple of days later it was hard as a rock and I threw it away. So, a couple of things could have gone wrong. It could have been the milk. I am currently trying to track down some raw milk. Also, maybe my temps weren’t right. The kit came with enough supplies to make 4 batches, so I have 3 more chances to perfect my homemade mozzarella cheese.

Does anyone have any experience with this? Suggestions?