Amateur cheese making: Take Two

Leif and I decided to move to the next level of processing milk from our family cow: homemade mozzarella. Leif mostly watched Sesame Street, but he was checking in on the project from time to time. I’ve already tried one cheese before, ‘Farmer’s cheese’, which is just milk curdled with lemon juice (or vinegar). Eric and I tried it in Belize from a roadside stand *gasp, purchasing un-inspected, unpasteurized dairy products!* and it was pretty good. The stuff I made was edible, but a little rubbery. And, it didn’t… melt?! Obviously some room for improvement.

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So here’s our internet purchased kit from Ricki the Cheese Queen, which makes me feel a little bit like a fourth-grader. Despite the silly illustrations, it did have almost everything we needed.

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Here are a few of the items we supplied. Eventually I would like to have a bigger stainless pot to do a double batch. I was all set up to double, but realized that my pot doesn’t hold 2 gallons of milk!

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Here is our cheese log after the hot water bath step. I think I ended up blending a couple steps into one, so had problems getting the salt mixed in. But, this is pretty much the finished product. If stirred for longer is becomes more firm, but i like mozzarella soft for pizza. From here, I shaped it into 2 fist-sized balls for the fridge (or freezer).

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Even though the weaner pigs will get most of the whey, I thought this would be kind of fun to try.

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Sample approved.

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