We make homemade pizza once a week in our house. We do this for two reasons, to avoid the chemicals in shop-bought pizza and to limit the amount of non-compostable / non-recyclable waste that we generate. We’ve managed to crack the pizza base, but for a long time struggled with the mozzarella. Then I stumbled upon raw organic milk at my local market and this video of a simple mozzarella recipe.
The milk i get comes in a recyclable 2 litre plastic container, which makes 2 mozzarella balls (see pic above for size). I find this enough mozzarella for 4 x 12″ pizzas, so I use 1 litre of milk to make one mozzarella ball one week and freeze the other litre to use the following week.
Essentially this is how I make mozzarella ;
- I stir just over 1/4 of teaspoon of citric acid into a 1 litre of raw milk and bring it up to 90 degrees fahrenheit on the hob. This happens quickly so watch it like a hawk.
- When it’s reaches 90degrees fahrenheit I turn off the heat and put in 20 drops of Vegetarian rennet. (I got my rennet in Down to Earth, St Great Georges St, Dublin 2 for €2.30 for 30ml)
- Then i leave to sit for 20 minutes until the curd forms a solid mass and separates from the whey.
- Next, using a knife that reaches to the bottom of the pot, I cut the curd into 1 inch squares (see video linked to above).
- Then i lift the squares out with a slotted spoon and put into a microwave-able bowl. You inevitably end up bring some whey with you, just drain off as much as you can.
- Next i microwave the curds for 2 minutes (my oven is a 850watts) to bring it up to 135degrees. This makes the fibres in the curd stretchy.
- I drain off most of the liquid and then start folding and stretching the curd. If it’s too hat to handle just use wooden / plastic spoons until it cools down a bit.
- Finally i microwave it for another 3o seconds which makes it very soft and pliable and then shape it into a ball.
Ricotta is even easier to make when you go by this simple method for making ricotta from whey.
- Add 2 cups of regular milk to the whey that was used to make the mozzarella. I’ve been told it’s best to use whey that’s been resting for 24 hours as you get more ricotta.
- Bring the milk to the boil. Watch it doesn’t boil over.
- Turn off the heat.
- Leave to sit for up to an hour. The curd will clump together over this time.
- Pour the whey and curd into a sieve lined with a cheesecloth / muslin.
- Leave to drain and it’s done.
The only thing i don’t like about making my own mozzarella is the left over whey – they’re lots of it. I’ve looked up uses for it but most require baking, which I’ve more than enough to do already.