30 min mozzarella, trouble with curds

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This topic contains 9 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  Ray Johnson 1 year, 6 months ago.

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  • #3860 Reply

    chris
    Participant

    Hi, I’m a new home cheese maker and if possible, I’d like to find out what I’m doing wrong when making a 30 min. mozzarella. I’ve had 3 attempts and I failed each time. The recipe calls for cheese salt, 1 gallon of store bought cows milk ( not ultra pasteurized), 1 1/4 cups cool chlorine-free water, 1 1/2 tsp citric acid, and 1/4 tsp liquid rennet. Each attempt the curds have been weak. After I cut the curds, and heat them in the microwave to 105 degrees F and as high as 170 degrees F, They are just like mush or they end up looking and tasting like ricotta cheese. My recipe comes from Ricki Carroll’s book. I’ve not tried this yet but the folks at the New England Cheese Making Store said to add 1/4 tsp calcium chloride to the milk in the beginning. They said that this would make the curds stronger. Others state that this will make it difficult to stretch. Need Help!

    #3862 Reply

    Punkin
    Participant

    Chris,
    Welcome to cheese making. I have made dozens of wheels of cheese and mozzarella is WAY the most difficult for me. I do know that acid levels are essential to stretch but have never mastered even getting to the stretch point. I recently used the recipe on this site for traditional method but still failed. Please forward any finding and maybe I will make another attempt.

    #3863 Reply

    Ray Johnson
    Participant

    As T cheese said mozzarella is tricky to get right. The 30min will sometimes take a lot of experimenting with to get it right. This is usually because of citric acid strengths being different in every bottle of the acid. That said don’t give up! I don’t have your recepie so don’t know how it goes exactly but when you add the citric acid and stir you should see the milk start to clump into strings a bit. These clumps will stick to your stirrer. If that doesn’t happen you need more acid. This is where the acid is causing the milk to curdle and the strings you see will eventually be what makes the cheese strech. At this point you usually add you rennet and let the milk set until you get a clean break. This will likely take about half an hour then you cut the curd and let it sit for about 10 min to heal then stir a bit while heating slightly to get the whey to separate. Drain the curds and gather them together etc. Heat in the microwave and they should get to a strechy stage if all goes well. Keep experimenting with small batches untill you get it to work. The calcium chloride might help if your milk is pasturized. It will only help with curd strength and curd yeld though not strech so don’t expect miracles from it

    #3864 Reply

    Ray Johnson
    Participant

    T Cheese if you do keep trying traditional mozzarella invest in a pH meter otherwise you will never know when to strech. Mine always streches around 5.3 Also I prefer it with lipase (traditional mozzarella that is) and it usually needs about 15 min in saturated brine or it really has no taste

    #3865 Reply

    Punkin
    Participant

    Ray, I have been at the point of investing in a PH meter but don’t know much about them. I started down the path a couple times but got scared off because of complicated sounding calibration and other things. Do you have a suggestion on what kind and what model?

    #3867 Reply

    chris
    Participant

    Hi Ray, How much additional citric acid should I try adding to my 30-minute mozzarella? Maybe just keep adding 1/2 tsp. at a time till it curdles or strings start to form? Do I need to mix it with 1 cup of water each addition? My recipe is from cultures for health. It says to add any citric acid before milk (into the pot). Add milk, heat to 90 degrees, take off heat, add rennet (stir 30 seconds), let sit 5 min, check curd, cut, slowly heat to 105 d, take off heat, stir 2-5 m, ladle curds to bowl, microwave 1 min, add salt, microwave 30 seconds (to about 160-170 degrees, then stretch the curd. I’ve not been able to get to stretch point yet. looks and tastes like ricotta cheese. Help! What type of PH meters should I look for ? I’m going to try using a test strip but it only measures whole #s, like 6,7,8 PH etc.Thanks.

    #3879 Reply

    Ray Johnson
    Participant

    Chris I haven’t made quick mozzarella in a while but seem to remember it took About 2 tap dissolved in water and stirred into warmed milk. You should start seeing strings of curdle start catching on your stirrer soon after. I also remember changing citric acid supplies a couple times and was down to 1/2 once and up to 4 tsp due to the different strengths. For quick mozzarella don’t bother getting a pH meter. Only get a pH meter if you start doing traditional mozzarella where you don’t use citric acid but rather add culture and acidify the curds over a number of hours.

    #3880 Reply

    Ray Johnson
    Participant

    T-cheese. Your pH meter question is probably best answered by a quick search on cheeseforum.org. I have a cheapo from makecheese.ca it works but takes some fiddling. I would look for one that has a probe that can be inserted into the curd/cheese as they work better than the style that just test on the surface from what I have heard. As for calibrating and general use also check out other forum but keep in mind it’s not that complicated. The meter will come with calibration fluids you mix with distilled water and keep clean in a jar for a long time before replacing. Just keep the meter probe clean before using the solutions. For traditional mozzarella the meter only gives you an idea when the cheese is ready (usually around 5.3) but you still have to test strech before you know for sure it’s ready.

    #3884 Reply

    Ken Whibley
    Participant

    I am new to cheese making and would like to use your Mozzarella recipe.
    I will be using shop bought full fat milk [4%] so i will need to add some Calcium Chloride. How much would i need for your recipe? can Lipase be used, if so what measure.

    #3887 Reply

    Ray Johnson
    Participant

    Ken do you want quick mozzarella or traditional mozzarella?

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