Homemade Mozzarella Cheese
... submitted by food.chat 
tools needed: 
a nonaluminum pot that will hold a gallon of milk 
a measuring cup or bowl to dissolve the rennet 
a spoon 
a candy thermometer 
a large slotted spoon, or small sieve 
  for the cheese:
1/2   rennet tablet
1/4 cup  cool, chlorine-free water (most bottled waters are
1 gal.  milk (2%, 1%, or skim)
2 tsp  citric acid
crush the rennet into the water and stir to dissolve. pour milk into a 
non-reactive pot (no aluminum or cast iron). place over medium heat. 
sprinkle the citric acid over the milk and stir a few times. heat milk 
to 88 degrees f. milk will begin to curdle. at 88 degrees f, add the 
rennet solution and continue stirring slowly every few minutes until the 
milk reaches 105 degrees f. turn off the heat. large curds will appear 
and begin to separate from the whey (the clear, greenish liquid). 
with a slotted spoon or mesh strainer, scoop the curd into a large glass 
bowl. (if it's still too liquid, let it set for a few more minutes). 
press the curds gently with your hand and pour off as much whey as 
possible. microwave curds on high for 1 minute, then drain off all the 
excess whey. with a spoon, press curds into a ball until cool. 
microwave two more times for 35 seconds each, and continue to drain the 
whey and work cheese into a ball. in the meantime, place the whey over 
medium heat and let it heat to about 175 degrees f. when cheese is 
cool enough to touch, knead it like bread dough until smooth. when you 
can stretch it like taffy, it is done. you can sprinkle 1 to 2 
teaspoons salt into the cheese while kneading and stretching it. the 
cheese will become stretchy, smooth and shiny. if it is difficult to 
stretch and breaks easily, dip it into the hot whey for a few seconds 
to make it warm and pliable. then pick it up again and stretch it into 
a long rope. fold over and stretch again. dip in hot whey as needed to 
make the cheese pliable. when the cheese is smooth and shiny (this 
takes just a few minutes), it is ready to eat. shape it into 
a log or golf-size balls, then store in a solution of 2 teaspoons salt 
to 1 cup water. 
note: citric acid and rennet are available through mail order, some 
pharmacies or health food stores. 
yield: about 3/4 pound cheese (12 ounces) 
international recipes online 
on-line culinary discussion at food.chat: 
(ID: 3853) Mirror: rec.food.recipes: Sun, Jan 23, 2005

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