A culinary online center dedicated to promoting the importance and the joy of American home cooking with an emphasis on local products and talent, celebrating the unique spirit and energy of the new food world ethos, especially in Vermont.
I love quotes that add meaning to my life. Here are a few to live by:
Avoid food products containing ingredients that a third-grader cannot pronounce.
Feeding nine billion people in a truly sustainable way will be one of the greatest challenges our civilization has had to confront. It will require the imagination, determination and hard work of countless people from all over the world. There is no time to lose.
â€”Jonathan A. Foley, director of the Institute on the Environment, U of MN
The surest way to capture the flavors, colors, and textures of a culture is by using authentic products.
â€”Lidia Bastianich, from Lidiaâ€™s Italian-American Kitchen
The most important habit you can develop is to taste as you are preparing something. Take a sample and taste it critically at different stages of the cooking, then correct the seasoningsâ€¦
â€”Marion Cunningham, from Learning to Cook
Plant a vegetable garden if you have the space, a window box if you donâ€™t.
Homemade Fresh Mozzarella Recipe
This recipe comes with my thanks to Lindsay Harris of Family Cow Farmstand for her wonderful introduction to making mozzarella. Lindsay and her husband, Evan Reiss, run the largest raw milk farm in Vermont. They have eight Guernsey cows, which Lindsay says are bred to process vitamin A better than any other breed.
My good friend, Lisa Farrell, and I spent a lazy Sunday afternoon making mozzarella cheese in my kitchen, using raw milk from Family Cow Farmstand, after having attended a workshop led by Lindsay. We felt confident that we could master the technique. To our surprise, it was even easier than it looked! Read Lisa’s Spoon Fed Story here.
Hereâ€™s the recipe we used, compliments of Lindsay Harris.
Mozzarella is a fresh cheese. This means it has not been worked on by bacteria (cultured). It is fresh milk made slightly acidic, then worked on by enzymes (rennet). The enzymes change the shape of the protein, causing solids (curd) to separate out from most of the liquid (whey).
FRESH HOMEMADE MOZZARELLA
1 gallon of milk (best if it is raw milk)
Citric acid crystals (1Â˝ tsp per gallon of milk)
1 cup of cool water
Rennet (1/8 tsp. for 1 gallon of milk depending on strength of rennet. Use less rennet if using pasteurized milk)
Salt (2-3 tbs per gallon of milk)
Thermometer (must reach 120 to 130 degrees F)
Bowl with ice waterÂ
To Make the Cheese
Rinse a large pot with cool water and dry it. Pour cold milk into the pot.
Dissolve citric acid crystals in Â˝ cup cool water, then stir this solution gently and thoroughly into cold milk. Slowly heat the milk to 90 degrees while stirring frequently.
Dissolve the rennet in Â˝ cup cool water. Take the milk off the heat and very gently but thoroughly stir in the rennet. Stir only once. Let milk sit undisturbed for 10 minutes or until you get a mass of curds that breaks cleanly. You may have to put a little heat to it if the curds arenâ€™t setting up right.
Mix salt into bowl of ice water to make an icy brine (to cool the finished cheese).Â
Use a long knife to cut the curds into 1 inch by 1 inch columns. Very gently stir the curds as you heat up the pot. The curds will become gooey and stretchy and stick together when the whey reaches 120 -130 degrees. Be sure to stir gently from the bottom up.Â
Using rubber gloves to pull the mass of curds out of the whey, stretch and work them for 5-10 secondsâ€”not too much or theyâ€™ll be rubbery. Whey will pour off as you work them. Immediately submerge the cheese in the icy brine to cool for 15 minutes or so to cool (the saltier the brine, the firmer the skin of the cheese).
Enjoy the cheese immediately and/or store moist (but not submerged) in the fridge in an airtight container.
Note: You can contact Lindsay Harris or Evan Reiss at www.familycowfarmstand.com. Family Cow Farmstand, 2386 Shelburne Falls Road, Hinesburg, VT 05461, 802-482-4440. Citric acid and rennet are available at www.cheesemaking.com.Â Â
Posted: 7-27-2013SUBSCRIBE TO THIS BLOG’S FEED
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