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Home made Mozzarella. Or, how to destroy your kitchen and burn the crap out of your hands. With pho

Discussion in 'Cheese Making' started by mdboatbum, Nov 10, 2013.

  1. mdboatbum

    mdboatbum Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Ok, the title was a bit of a joke. This is a simple and fun project that anyone can do. If you can find raw or at least low temp pasteurized milk it will work out perfectly. Ultra pasteurized milk will work, but not quite as well. Parmelat, or the stuff that doesn't need refrigeration, will not, or so I'm told. I've even made cheese with powdered milk, which worked well but provided a very hard, dense cheese due to the lack of fat. Junket rennet, available in most grocery stores, doesn't work very well in my experience. You have to use 2 full tablets to get a workable curd, and the additional ingredients in the tablets inhibit the reaction leading to more of a ricotta type cheese which is difficult to pull.

    To one gallon of milk I added 1/2tsp calcium chloride, 2tsp citric acid and 1/4tsp rennet, at intervals. (explained below)

    All were diluted in  roughly 1/4 cup filtered water each.

    I'd had a devil of a time finding food grade calcium chloride, then I happened to look at the label of Ball Pickle crisp granules. Well whaddaya know?!

    Added the citric acid and Calcium Chloride at 80˚, this is after I added it.

    You can sort of see here how the first 2 ingredients start to curdle the milk.

    At 89˚ I added the rennet.

    5 minutes later it had formed a solid mass, which I sliced with a long stainless steel knife.

    Then I let the mixture get to 105˚, removed from the heat and covered.

    After about 20 minutes, the curds had really separated from the whey.

    Lined a fine mesh colander with cheesecloth.

    And dumped the curds in. Due to the store bought ultra pasteurized milk, they immediately disintegrated, but it worked out fine.

    After squeezing out most of the whey.

    I let it sit overnight in the strainer and about another cup of whey drained out.

    The rest of the process is heating and stretching. Since we still don't have a microwave, I did the traditional 170˚ water bath method. Cheese turned out great! No pics of the final process because the wife was out and I has kinda busy scalding my hands and stretching cheese.
    snorkelinggirl and disco like this.
  2. snorkelinggirl

    snorkelinggirl Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Hey Md,

    You had me at "destroy your kitchen and burn the crap out of your hands!" :yahoo:

    Sounds like a great weekend project. I've always had a fascination for making homemade cheese, but have never had the balls to try it. Thanks for a great step-by-step....you've inspired me. Too busy before Thanksgiving to do this, but after that I too will aspire to trash my kitchen and hands!

    Have a great Sunday, and I'm looking forward to your posts showing how you plan to use all of this great fresh mozarella!
  3. mdboatbum

    mdboatbum Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Thanks Clarissa! It's really only about a half hour project, so not intimidating at all. The rennet I had to order online, everything else I was able to find locally. As for the cheese, well it was delicious. Emphasis being on the WAS. Made this last week and most of it was eaten over a few nights during pre dinner cocktail hour. Had one lump left which I ground up with the remainder of the way too salty Canadian bacon along with some onions and pepper for ham and cheese salad. Mixed up with some Duke's mayo and it made the Canadian bacon much more palatable.

    I might make some more today and put it in the smoker. Stay tuned :)
  4. disco

    disco Legendary Pitmaster OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    This is an incredible post on an incredible forum. I love the clear description of the project and the supporting pictures. This is going on my to do list and I am bookmarking the post.

    Thanks again!

  5. snorkelinggirl

    snorkelinggirl Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I'm really looking forward to seeing that post! I'm having visions of smoked fresh mozarella with grilled butternut squash as a winter salad....a little diced salty Canadian bacon would go well with this, I think!

    Thanks again, great post!
  6. That's so wild and wonderful! I am entirely impressed!!! Cheers! - Leah
  7. bmudd14474

    bmudd14474 Legendary Pitmaster Staff Member Administrator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Looks great. I still haven't done this but need too soon.
  8. mdboatbum

    mdboatbum Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Didn't get around to making any more cheese for the smoker yesterday. Made the lox sushi rolls and had a couple malty beverages, then might've had a couple more...

    Might get around to it today.
  9. foamheart

    foamheart Epic Pitmaster OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    You know, its getting where I am embarassed to even post on here with all yall master chefs!

    Wow what a great place to learn.
  10. mdboatbum

    mdboatbum Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Haha!! Foam you put up some of the best food on here!! You're an inspiration to us all. As I said, the mozz is one of the easiest things on earth, it's just something most people think is more complicated than it is.
  11. foamheart

    foamheart Epic Pitmaster OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    But I miss as much as I hit, LOL..... Its really nice though to be able to come and share ideas and not worry about it being great, Its obviously ok if it is, but its just fun to try new things. Well new to me anyway.

    BTW Baby Sis cam back from her hiking trip, seems the others there wanted to buy more of the sweet jerky, one woman said her husband wants to come and learn to make it...ROFL. You never know when you try something. I know that the cheese, has been something for a long time I have wanted to attempt. But the kitchen is filling up with special stuff needed for future endeavors.

    Things are always easy once you done it. Well most things anyway, and if you screw it up find a special name like "Blackened" and act like you planned it!
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2013