Making Cheese: First Attempt Under Whey!

 

 

On a family outing the other day, my husband saw this kit to make your own cheese. We weren’t sure if it would work, but we got it anyway and figured we would give it a shot. The booklet claimed we could make a batch of mozzarella in 30 minutes… I’m sure it was just my being unfamiliar with the directions (as I had to keep stopping to re-read them and make sure I was doing things right), but I have to admit that my first attempt did take more than a half hour. The book was right about one thing… you only needed a gallon of whole milk to get the process going. The kit contained the citric acid and rennet tablets (as well as cheese salt) that we needed, so it was much more cost-effective than searching for them online and having them shipped to us (we live 1 1/2 hours away from the nearest store that sells cheese making supplies).

The first attempt was under whey… (yeah, I know… cheesy joke… and yet another… but I’m tired and tend to get like that with a lack of sleep! lol):

At first, it seemed like it was a bust. The ‘curds’ looked like ricotta, not cheese curds! However, I heated it up a little, and drained it a lot, and it began holding its shape. I kept draining and heating until I was able to pull and stretch it.

 

 

It would have been even smoother, had I not had to keep stopping to read the directions. The cheese cooled quickly to the non-stretchable temperature, so that’s where the little tiny bumps came in. Now that I know what I’m doing, I’ll work without stopping to read next time and I’ll be quicker.

The end result: a totally awesome and completely fresh mozzarella that tasted perfect! Such a soft and creamy texture and great wholesome flavor without all the added salt like the cheeses at the stores!

The big question is: Will it make it into a recipe… or be gone before it gets that chance?!!?

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9 Comments »

  1. laura.emmett@oneonta.edu Said:

    That is wonderful. Is there anything you don’t do?

    • cakesbykat Said:

      lol. I accomplish everything I set out to do. However, there are things that I wouldn’t try (or rather COULDN’T-due to the injury 12 years ago).

  2. Lois Said:

    Was it the Lakeland book? I’ve had a go at making halumi and feta… the feta was better!
    Love your post!

    • cakesbykat Said:

      No, it was Ricki’s Cheesemaking Kit for Mozzarella and Ricotta. So good-I highly recommend it.

      • Lois Said:

        I’ll have a look for it – I haven’t been filled with confidence in the book I have – I’ve blogged about my efforts, as i said, feta good, halumi ho-hum!
        http://loiselden.com/2012/10/02/its-halumi-jim-but-not-quite-as-we-know-it/

      • cakesbykat Said:

        I’m just starting out….but a friend of mine said it has a lot to do with the milk you use. Sometimes it’s SUPER pasteurized (they use a higher temperature); but they aren’t always good at labeling it as such. If you check out Ricki’s website, they supposedly have a list of milks by state/brand that they found to work best. I haven’t tried feta-I’ll have to check out your blog.

      • Lois Said:

        Yes, that could be it! I used goats milk for the feta which was more successful… so maybe you’re right about the milk. I’ll see if i can find some unpasteurised and maybe have another go at the halumi!

      • cakesbykat Said:

        I’m not sure about halumi, but when making the mozzarella or ricotta, they say that you can use pasteurized… just not ULTRA pasteurized. I used a whole milk that is known to be creamy. It’s a fairly local brand, so it’s probably fresher, too. Unfortunately, not all brands are labeled properly as far as the pasteurization goes. In this little booklet, they do give separate side notes just in case you are using milk straight from the farm.

      • Lois Said:

        It obviously needs investigation! Thanks for your help, much appreciated!


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