Archive for the ‘Cheesemaking’ Category

Impatient Mozarella Recipe

June 14, 2013


  • 1/16 teaspoon lipase
  • 1/2 teaspoon citric acid
  • 1/8 teaspoon rennet
  • Water.
  • 1/2 gallon non-homogenized milk (super fresh required.. otherwise you get ricotta)
  • Salt to tast ~1.5 teasoon.


  • Slotted Spoon
  • 4 qt pot
  • microwave
  • microwavable bowl
  • stovetop
  • thermometer which can read from 80 degrees F to 120 degrees F.


  1. Add the milk to the pot.    Sprinkle the Lipase on top of the milkIMG_5046
  2. Dissolve the citric acid in 1/4 cup water.   Ensure it’s completely diluted.  (I nuke it to make it go faster.. then add some more cold water or an ice cube to cool it down again.)
  3. Add the dissolved citric acid to the milk while stirring vigorously.IMG_5047
  4. Turn the stove on medium or medium high (extra impatient)
  5. Stir the milk until it reaches 88degrees F.   (Just like Back to the Future. )IMG_5049
  6. Vigorously stir in the rennet. (20 seconds)
  7. Stir the milk in a swirling motion, just enough to keep it moving.
  8. Milk will curdle around 104-120 degrees F..     If it hasn’t.  your milk is awesome and you should probably add some more diluted citric acid.
  9. STOP STIRRING AS soon as it curdles.IMG_5051
  10. Wait 30seconds of a minute..
  11. Using the slotted spoon Start collecting the Curd to one side of the pot.    (takes a couple minutes.IMG_5053
  12. If you’ve hit 120 degrees F, or if the curd is stretchy “melting off the slotted spoon” label it into the microwaveable bowl.IMG_5057
  13. Drain the first batch of whey off of the bowl back into the pot.IMG_5064
  14. Put the cheese on the edge of one hand so that both sides hang off..    let gravity strech it.     If it wont stretch… then put the bowl in the microwave with the cheese and nuke it for 30 seconds and try again.  (May have to do twice.)IMG_5072
  15. Add the salt to the newly accumulated whey in the bowl and mix it in with the other hand.IMG_5068
  16. Dip the cheese in the salted whey.
  17. Repeat the gravity stretch, dunk process until the surface of the cheese is smooth looking.    Don’t over stretch or it will be tough.
  18. That’s it.    Eat within a few hours     Don’t refrigerate.

Feta Recipe

April 5, 2011


I started out cheesemaking about 4 years ago with this book here: From which I had mixed results.  It’s not very exacting in its use of language which drives me a bit  crazy.   But most the chesses have turned out well.  If not exactly as they should be, they’re still delicious.    It also seemed to have very inconsistent measurements for things like rennet and culture.

My Feta (I use cows milk sadly, since I have no reliable source of goat milk) *occasionally* gets runny after a few days (but still delicious as a cracker spread) , so I’ve backed WAY off the culture, and increased the salt which inhibits culture growth.


Finished Product

Time: (45 minutes actual work… spread over over 12 hours) Difficulty: Easy



You can get most of the following for  much cheaper from various places.   I only grabbed them all from the same place to make this easier to follow.

1 Gallon Whole Milk (NOT Ultra-pasteurized!!)

1/2 teaspoon MA11 culture

1/4 teaspoon lamb lipase (if not using goatmilk)

1/2 teaspoon calcium chloride (if using homogenized / pasteurized milk)

1/2 teaspoon liquid rennet diluted in 1 Cup Cool, non chlorinated water

Distilled water for the above. (I skip this now and just use tap. )

1 1/2 teaspoons non-iodized salt (kosher or sea salt)



Steel measuring spoons

Curd knife Stainless Steel Pot (1 gallon min)

Small sauce pan.  (I’m too lazy for this step anymore)

1 small bowl.

Cheesecloth.  (i’m bad I use the dispoable plastic variety as I don’t like boiling it afterwards with baking soda to clean it.)   Cheese making is messy enough with out all that!


Accurate low temperature thermometer  (Meat thermometers are generally OK (clean of course).   Candy thermometers NO!)


1) Fill Sink with Hot water from the tap, Set Gallon of milk in the water to start warming it up. (Target Temp is 86°F)

Preheating Milk

2) Meanwhile, Sterilize equipment (NOT THE THERMOMETER!!!  IT WILL BREAK / MELT if it’s low temperature. I use denatured alcohol and a paper towel to sterilize that. )    by boiling it with some tap water in the Stainless steel pan for a few minutes. Drain somewhere clean.   Sterilization is probably less of an issue for this cheese, as it doesn’t really age.


3) Boil distilled water in small saucepan to sterilize. Cover and place in refrigerator to cool.  (I lately have been skipping this step.. just using plain filtered water…   doesn’t seem to impact feta. )

Sterilizing Distilled Water

4) Wipe down the milk container and pour milk into the stainless steel pan. Check the temperature, place the pan back in the water in the sink if it’s not at 86°F yet.

Milk into sterlized pot

5) Once the Milk reaches 86°F, add the lipase (1/4 t. ) and the culture (1/2 t.) Let it sit on top of the milk for a minute or two, then stir it in with the curd knife.

Forgive the bizarre aspect ratio. Stupid wordpress

6) Remove Pot from sink. Let sit covered for 1 hour, periodically checking the temperature. (If it goes below 86, put it back in the water bath in the sink to warm up.

7) After the hour is up, add 1/2 Cup distilled water from the fridge to the small bowl and mix in the 1/2 t. Calcium Chloride. Add to the Milk, stirring well.

8 ) Mix the remaining 1/2 Cup of distilled water with the 1/2t. rennet in the small bowl. Add to the milk and mix well for a minute. (If the milk starts to curdle, then STOP mixing immediately)

9) Leave for 1 Hour and do not disturb.

10) By now you should have a yogurt looking mass of curd which may have pulled away from the side of the pan.

11) Cut it into half inch cubes with the curd knife: (hold the curd knife vertical and cut a grid, then hold it at a 45 degree angle to cut the columns of curd in the grid.

12) Let sit for 20 minutes. (Or longer at 86 if you want firmer cheese.)

13) Meanwhile cut a large square (2 ft square of cheese cloth) line the colander.

Collander lined with Cheesecloth

14) Drain the curds through the cheesecloth.  (This can be quite messy pouring the curds into the cheese cloth.   The longer you waited, the less messy.

15) Bring the corners of the cheese cloth together and tie off. Hang the cheese cloth from something to drain for 4 hours.  (Or overnight is what I usually do)

All Tied Up

16) Unwrap the cheese cloth. Place the cheese in a large glass storage container an cut it into 1” cubes. Add salt and gently mix.


17) You can eat immediately (well ok.. let it sit at least a few hours for the salt to diffuse) or keep up to a month and a half in the fridge. (Cheese gets better with aging, though sometimes gets gooey. Still tastes great though. )