Some time ago I spotted a cheese making kit at my local deli. Already having prepared ricotta using Mrs G's method, I was ready to move on in my cheese making endeavours but not ready to do it on my own. This kit was perfect. The Begininners' Italian Cheeses Kit by Mad Millie provided everything I needed to make macarpone, ricotta, ricotta salata and mozzarella.
This kit includes a thermometer and pipette (for measuring small quantities of liquid) which are required for subsequent kits.
You just need to obtain un-homogenized whole milk which can sometimes be difficult. I found a local brand from Misty Mountains Farms and I was set to make my own mozzarella cheese.
Calcium chloride is added to the milk which is then heated to 13C (55.5F) before mixing in diluted citric acid. This milk is then brought to a higher temperature of 32C (89.5F) and rennet is stirred in. After 30 minutes the curd forms and is cut and heated further to 42C (107.6F).
Once the correct temperature is reached the curds are scooped into a muslin lined colander and allowed to drip for 5 minutes.
Now the fun part! Put on a pair of rubber gloves and take a handful of curds. Place the curds in a bowl of 70C (158F) hot water for 20 seconds. Now, carefully stretch and fold the curd until it is smooth and flexible.
The balls of mozzarella are place into a bowl of icy salt water for 20 minutes and then they are ready to eat!
The mozzarella is delicious fresh with red ripe tomatoes and basil but matured for a week in the refrigerator is wonderful on a pizza. Either way I'll be making this regularly.