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Sunday, February 19, 2012

Eat. . . Homemade mozzarella cheese

Mozzarella with its best mate, Tomato!  Drizzled with olive oil, sprinkled with salt and ground pepper. . . mmmmmm!

It seems to me that these recent "Eat" posts could reasonably be subtitled "Knitapotamus' Adventures in Cheeseland!" And so the adventures continue!

Last week I made mozzarella cheese. Not for the first time, but certainly the first time I got a result that looked anything like mozzarella! Did you see that photo up above? Looks like mozzarella, doesn't it?! Even tastes (um, I mean "tasted") like mozzarella! Not like the first lot, which put me off cheese-making for a whole year. That looked something like this:

But this. . . this was mozzarella to make my heart sing, and to believe that I am actually making progress with my goal to become proficient at making at least one cheese this year!

Here are a few photos to show you what happened to turn a load of incredibly creamy Wangapeka Downs milk into some delicious stretchy mozzarella cheese in around half an hour. . . But be warned, it is not the complete recipe, just enough to give you an idea of the process.

2 litres milk @ 31 C, plus 1/2 tsp veg rennet
40C, forming curds into a ball
60-70C, stretching 1/3 of hot curd ball to get mozzarella texture
Plunge stretched balls of mozzarella into icy water for cooling and storage
Slice up, add tomato, season with olive oil, salt & pepper and devour!
Cheese-making equipment from Mapua Country Trading, and mozzarella recipe from "Cutting the Curd - Cheese-making at home" book by Katherine Mowbray.

And guess what? Just when you thought you couldn't take any more cheesy adventures, tomorrow I plan to make halloumi for the first time ever. More on that soon ;-)

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