Today I am blogging about making homemade mozzarella cheese. Yes it can be done. Yes it's very easy. Yes it will save you tons of money if you're into buying lots of mozzarella cheese at the grocery store.
First things first - yes I know this is kinda weird. Who makes their own cheese? We do. Sometimes. that is. We first made homemade mozzarella about a year or two ago and did it a few times then forgot about the activity until this weekend. You just need a few ingredients and supplies most of which can be bought at regular grocery stores or online. Mozzarella is a soft cheese and the easiest of cheeses to make at home for beginners (like us!). It takes only about an hour and you can eat it immediately.
For beginners I recommend this site. It's Ricki Carroll's site and she is the Cheese Queen. You can buy her book which is excellent! I am not going to spell out the entire recipe here today but please check her site out or hit up your library (hint that is what I did).
Ingredients & materials:
- 1 gallon of whole milk
- Citric Acid
- Rennet tablets
- tap water
- thermometer - preferably digital or candy
- cheese cloth
Ideally we'd use 1 gallon of organic whole milk but since we're on a budget we got Fresh to Frozen milk which was pretty cheap. Whole milk is ideal for this since it gives you the best tasting mozzarella and something to do with the fat content works best. I think you can use 2% or skim but it yields less and is more bland.
This is the first step. Pour milk into non reactive pot (no aluminum or cast iron). See photo. Just milk at first. Then add citric acid.
For our milk batch we used 1/2 a rennet tablet. I just cut it and saved the rest for later. Dissolve the 1/2 tablet in 1/4 cup of water and stir.
You use a thermometer and put the stove on low/medium heat until it gets to the magical number of 88F. Our digital thermometer's battery died so we pulled out the old fashion regular one.
After adding the rennet solution, stir until it reaches 105F.
We of course did taste test this at the end (and perhaps along the whey (HA!)) and it was great! Slightly too salty but so fresh and yumm! What a savings compared to store bought mozzarella that normally is around $7-8 for maybe 10oz. We paid probably $3-4 for the milk and not counting the other supplies which we already had got more than 10oz!
For more information check out this site or google around.