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Aug 4, 2006 12:49 AM

30 minute microwave mozzarella?

Talking about fresh sources of mozzarella in SF one poster wrote

"I've been experimenting with cheesemaking and Rikki Carrol's book on home cheesemaking has a 30-minute microwave version that is REALLY impressive. I'm serious -- we had fresh mozzarella in our hands in 30 minutes from a gallon of milk a little citric acid and some rennet.

I'll never buy mozzarella again."

Could someone restate this recipe? These are two of my favorite things .. mozzarella & microwaves.

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  1. Well it's 60 minutes and not 30 but this link gives a fairly detailed description:

    It's very interesting. I might invest in one of their kits just for the fun of it.

    1 Reply
    1. re: cheryl_h

      Thanks so much. You probably don't need the kit as they give you the recipe and you could buy the stuff on your own.

      Yeah, this is more than I'd want to tackle. I was hoping it was more like throwing a bunch of stuff in a dish and throwing into the microwave and ... voila ... cheese.

    2. I'm guessing that this is the recipe they were talking about on the LA board. It's not quite as easy as tossing everything in a bowl and nuking it, but still very simple.

      You can probably get all of the ingredients at the local grocery store, though the rennet tablets can be kind of a challenge. You may be able to find them in the pudding/jello section under the name Junket.

      1. This recipe is certainly the most simple I know of and provides decent results, but it pales in comparison to some of the available fresh mozzarella here in Boston (Purity Cheese, Bob's, Sessa's, etc)... which some say pales in comparison to the imported mozzarella di bufala. Find the freshest, non ultra-pasturized milk around, and give it a shot.

        1. I'm the one who referenced the 30-minute method and it really did only take 30 minutes... From Rikki Carrol's "Home Cheesemaking" pages 134 and 135

          - 1 1/2 citric acid
          - 1 gallon whole milk
          - 1/8 to 1/4 lipase powder dissolved in 1/4 cup cool water -- allow to sit for 20 minutes for a stronger flavor; lipase is optional
          1/4 teaspoon liquid rennet diluted in 1/4 cup cool, unchlorinated water
          1 teaspoon cheese salt (non-iodized, Diamond kosher flake salt)

          1. While stirring, add the citric acid solution to the milk at 55 degrees and mix thoroughly. If adding lipase, add it now.

          2. Heat milk to 88 degrees over medium/low heat. The milk will start to curdle.

          3. Gently stir in the diluted rennet with an up-and-down motion, while heating the milk to between 100 and 105 degrees. Turn off the heat. The curds should be pulling away from the sides of the pot; they are ready to scoop out (approximately 3 to 5 minutes for this)

          4. The curds will look like thick yogurt and have a bit of shine to them, and the whey will be clear. If the whey is still milky white, wait a few more minutes.

          5. Scoop the curds with a slotted spoon and put into a 2-quart microwavable bowl. Press the curds gently with your hands, pouring off as much whey as possible.

          6. Microwave the curds on HIGH for 1 minute. Drain off all the excess whey. Gently fold the cheese over and over (as in kneading bread) with your hand or a spoon. This distributes the heat evenly throughout the cheese, which will not stretch until it is too hot to touch (145-degree inside the curd).

          7. Microwave two more times for 35 seconds each; add salt to taste after the second time (optional). After each heating, knead again to distribute the heat.

          8. Knead the cheese until it is smooth and elastic. When the cheese stretches like taffy, it is done. If the curds break instead of stretch, they are too cool and need to be reheated.

          9. When the cheese is smooth and shiny, roll it into small balls and eat while warm. Or place them in a bowl of ice water for 1/2 hour to bring the inside temperature down rapidly; this will produce a consistent smooth texture throughout the cheese. Although best eaten fresh, if you must wait, cover and store in the refrigerator.

          Yield: 3/4 to 1 pound.

          TROUBLESHOOTING: If the curds turn into the consistency of ricotta cheese and will not come together, change the brand of milk; it may have been heat-treated at the factory to too high a temperature.

          3 Replies
          1. re: Carrie 218

            See gorboduc's post above for pictures. And the citric acid measurement is teaspoons.

            1. re: Carrie 218

              Can you describe the final product? I can buy decent handpulled mozzarella locally so I'm curious to know how a homemade version compares.

              1. re: Carrie 218

                Can anyone recommend any source for kosher rennet?

              2. Thanks, Aromatheraphy... trying to type fast and missed that bit.

                Cheryl H, I belive the quality of one's homemade Moz depends on your milk source. I'm here in San Francisco so I get some pretty darned decent milk from Strauss farms that makes for intensely rich, lovely cheese.

                I guess it all depends on your source...