Mozzarella Mayhem

It sounds like it should be easy, but of all the cheese I’ve made, Mozzarella has been my nemesis.  Now don’t get offended but at my house we don’t really consider it a “real Cheese.”  I say this because we prefer a cheese with more of a taste, body and age.  So interestingly I knew it would come up as a challenge so I began in September to try to master it.  That’s the thing about me I’m slightly competitive and I just decided that Stretched curd must be mastered.

Goat milk trial number one:  Well I decided to try the longer process of mozzarella from Debra Amrein-Boyes book 200 Easy Homemade Cheese recipes.  It uses a Thermo starter and then ripened the milk, then I was basically waited for the acidity to drop.  Well I got distracted by my horse and instead of the cheese acidifying for an hour is was sitting there for almost an hour forty-five minutes.  So once I started to heat the curd it just broke and would not stretch.  Failure number one!

Goat milk Trail two:  I then tried the mozzarella 2 from Debras Amrein-Boyes’ book- this is your junket mozzarella.  Well I made cheese but the stretch wasn’t very good and I had Mozzarella but the balls were hard and inconsistent.

So after talking to Debra about the hardness of making mozzarella with goat milk she reminded me that after all I am trying to make mozzarella with goat milk…meaning that a little more fat content might be more helpful.

By now November has arrived and I decided to try cows milk to make mozzarella.  I choose the junket mozzarella in Mary Karlin’s book, I found it really interesting that I was to add the acid (lemon juice) when the milk was warmed.  As soon as I added it the milk began to turn into small curds like ricotta.  Then I added the rennet which seemed like a lot of rennet to me and the curd became one mass and the whey separated instantly from the curd and there seemed no need to wait as long as she said.  I was concerned that the acidity was dropping too quickly so I started to stretch my curd- and it stretched and I got mozzarella out of it but it was not quite right.

Cow’s milk Mozzarella with the Mozzarella recipe from Debra’s book:  Well this was easy.  Maybe it was because I had failed miserably so many times?   I add the citric acid to the milk before warming, heat to the temp; I didn’t at CaCl because I had raw milk, so I moved directly to the rennet and then the recipe said to stir the curd after I cut it for 20 minutes while heating and another 20 minutes off heat.  As soon as I added the rennet the Ph meter was dropping quickly so I waited until the meter read 5.2 and then began the process of the boiling water with salt in it and stretching the curd.  It was amazing like that “Ah Ha light bulb moment”.  It was so easy I couldn’t believe it, and it stretched beautifully like ribbons of cheese!  I was braiding cheese, making mozzarella balls and a few other sticks of mozzarella.  Finally I get it! When I broke apart a mozzarella ball it was soft and had distinct stringy, stretched sections and the taste was rich and creamy, and it smelled almost like butter.   This might have actually changed my opinion of Mozzarella.

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Biggest difference was that I used cow’s milk that was fresh from a cow with the cream separating on top of the milk.  It really does have everything to do with your source of milk.

Comments

  1. Gorgeous cheese! The 30 minute recipe works every time – the only downside is it needs to be eaten right away – but, probably not a problem at your house. The Traditional Mozza recipe is a keeper, for me. I need a PH meter, but watched Deb make it at my house, and the key “keeper” point for me is I can vacuum pack the cut curd before the heat and stretch and they will keep a long while – and I can heat and stretch as I need. She made a double batch which would be about three portions to vacuum pack.
    🙂
    V

  2. Needs to be eaten right away? If that does become a problem I could help you with that. Terrific post, keep up the good work.

  3. I’m so happy to read this. This is the type of manual that needs to be given and not the random misinformation that’s at the other blogs. Appreciate your sharing this best doc.

  4. I didn’t love the junket mozzarella either… but I am simply in awe of your beautiful braids and creamy looking mozzarella. Wow. Congratulations on your great success!

  5. Congrats! your mozza success looks beautiful, the braids are really impressive

  6. I realy like your website looks very neat

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