This homemade cheese stuff is amazingly healthy. Not that I have made any of it yet, but I have had some really good exercise footslogging from shop to shop trying to get the equipment and ingredients I need! I found the recipes on the internet and I deliberately chose the ones designated as easy. The first requirement was a dairy thermometer, or at least for the ricotta recipe one that would read 185 to 195 degrees and for the mozzarella, between 55 and 145. Problem number one – there are two sorts of cooking thermometers easily available; one for confectionary which records really high temperatures, and one for meat which goes from about 100 to 200 F which was the one I got. So I am OK for part of the range but for the lower temperatures it will be a clean fingertip, and a spot of luck. Luckily the recipe does describe what the mixture should be doing at various stages, so that will be my guide. Cheesecloth was hard to get but I managed it at the fourth shop.
I never thought I would get rennet but I finally tracked it down. The one thing I still haven’t got is citric acid, but Wikipedia tells me that lemon juice is 5% citric acid so I will have to use that for the time being. I didn’t even bother to look for cheese salt, which sounds very specialised, and is supposed to be optional anyway.
Both the recipes stipulate using whole milk, but of course I will be using skim, and I may decide to whisk in some powdered skim milk to increase the yield.
Phew! Now I am too tired to make the cheese.