In my quest to learn new things, I have become obsessed with making things myself instead of buying it at the store. One of the things I wanted to try was to make cheese. I bought a cheese making kit to make my first time a bit easier!
This kit made it very easy! It had everything I needed to make mozzarella cheese. To begin, I bought some fresh cows milk. You can use pasteurized milk, but not ultra-pasteurized milk. However, I wanted to see what it was like, making cheese, straight from the source!
The cheese making kit contained the following ingredients: citric acid, salt, and rennet tablets. I dissolved 1 1/2 teaspoons citric acid in 1 cup water. In 1/4 cup water, dissolve 1/4 rennet tablet.
In a non-aluminum, non-cast iron pot, add the citric acid water and 1 gallon of milk. Stir and heat to 90 degrees. Remove the pot from the burner and add in the rennet water. Stir for 20 seconds and then put a lid on the pot and let that set for 10 minutes.
The curd will be separating from the whey. The curd will resemble custard.
After that has set, take a long knife and cut into the curd. Make long slits in the curd. Put it back on the stove and cook to 105 degrees. Slowly stir as your curds heat back up.
Take off the burner and stir for another 2-5 minutes. Drain the whey from the curd - save the whey! This can be used for a variety of things! Do some research before discarding the whey. It can be used for shakes, pet food, baking bread, making cakes, making ricotta cheese, etc.
In another sauce pan, heat water to 185 degrees. Put the curds in a strainer and dip into the hot water.
This will allow you to stretch the cheese. Dip it in the hot water a few times and then put some rubber gloves on. Take the cheese and stretch the cheese. It should pull like taffy. If it doesn't put it back in the hot water.
Add 1 teaspoon of salt and work it into the cheese. Form the cheese into a log, braid, ball - whatever shape you want.
Put the cheese in cool water for 5 minutes and then in ice water for 15 minutes.
Caution! 1 gallon of cheese does not make a lot of mozzarella! It makes 2 small logs................Some people may think it isn't worth it, but I got a lot of satisfaction from making this product all by myself! I don't like to think about all of the chemicals that are put into the things that I buy at the store. If I can keep food in an organic state, the healthier my family will be!