In need of some Christmas gift inspiration, I browsed a few blogs for lists of “what to buy your guy”. Will is a foodie, so when I came across this DIY cheese kit, I thought it would be perfect! The kit I bought came from Urban Cheesecraft and we were really impressed with how easy it was to make. 🙂 It took us less than hour and we had a pound of super-delicious mozzarella. Who knew?!
All you need is the cheese kit and a gallon of milk. We used a gallon or raw milk from Will’s usual market CSA since it’s important that the milk is not ultra-pasteurized for it to work. The kit contains rennet, citric acid, cheese salt, cheese cloth, and a thermometer.
The rennet and citric acid are both dissolved individually in 1 cup of water each. To begin, you heat the milk and citric acid on the stove top. Once it reaches a certain temperature, you add the rennet and continue to heat. The milk will start to coagulate like this…
Once the curd has formed, you cover the pan and let it sit for 5 minutes. Next, you separate the curd from the whey by pouring the contents of the pan through a strainer. Press some of the excess watery whey from the curd.
Now that you have the curd separated, you heat it in the microwave for a minute and then do another round of pressing. You really want to get rid of that whey!
After you’ve heated the curd and pressed the whey out a couple of times, you will then knead the curds.
We watched a couple of YouTube videos to learn some good technique for kneading the cheese! In the process of kneading, you also add the cheese salt to taste.
Our friends, Josh and Amanda invited us over for dinner that night and we served our fresh mozzarella in a caprese salad. Yum!! It will be fun to experiment with more cheese in the future by adding different herbs and flavors. 🙂