Knead for Cheese

I’m on a DIY dairy kick.  First it was yogurt, then soft cheese, and now…mozzarella!

Making homemade mozzarella is simple, at least in theory!

It only requires 3-4 ingredients

  • whole milk
  • citric acid
  • rennet
  • salt (optional, I suppose)

For the milk I used local Homestead Creamery non-homogenized (a.k.a creamline) milk.  I bought citric acid in the bulk bins of my local Whole Foods and ordered the liquid vegetarian rennet online from The Cheesemaker.

Before embarking on this challenge I read through several recipe’s and they all said the same thing, “heat milk and citric acid, add rennet, reheat, cut, let sit, strain, microwave, knead, reheat, add salt, form balls, refrigerate”.

Really that’s it.  The whole process took probably 40 minutes but only about 15 were active.  Very active.  I’m sure I will be calmer next time I make it but last night I was dodging around the kitchen, spilling milk, and having a grand ‘ol time.

One gallon of milk yields just shy of a pound of cheese and a ton of whey.  Good thing I like whey.

What better way to showcase fresh mozzarella than a capresse salad?

On of my garden goals this year is to put up some pesto and I am happy to report our garden is flourishing with three kinds of basil!  For this salad I combined chopped Sweet Dani, Purple Ruffles, and Sweet Genovese basil, two barely-ripe cherry tomatoes from the garden (couldn’t resist!), the mozzarella balls, a drizzle of fine olive oil, and a sprinkle of black Himalayan sea salt.

The cheese is really good!  It turned out a little harder than I had hoped, I think I overkneaded…

If you want more details, here’s the recipe I used.

Grilled wild Sockeye salmon, corn, zucchini, and brown rice completed our dinner.

Mmmm, tastes like summer!

Need yet another reason to eat wild salmon?  According to the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch, is takes 3 wild fish to feed one farmed fish!  That is just not sustainable my friends.



  1. Ah this is so cool! I’m still on the lookout for local milk, so I can make some of Dave’s dairy-fixins from scratch. I would indulge more often as well if I could get it local & make it myself. 🙂 It looks wonderful, as does your beautiful garden bounty.

  2. Your food looks so …fresh! I always have fresh foods – but then put pasta sauce and cheese all over it :(…can’t help it…it’s all natural sauce? – I know, I know.

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