Mozerella Take 3
Of course, I was still a bonehead and added the rennet to the milk at the beginning instead of the citric acid. I didn't realize my error until I went to add the rennet and saw the citric acid sitting there. doh!
Still, it worked out in the end. The problem the first 2 times had to have been the milk. I guess it was homoginized. This time I went with raw milk. I'm so glad I live in an area where I can actually GET raw milk.
(Speaking of raw milk, it actually isn't too bad. Too thick for my taste, but had a really nice, earthy undertone. It was nice to actually see what milk is *supposed* to taste like--or rather, what it tastes like straight outta the cow. )
I think I may have stretched the mozerella a little too much. It's a bit harder than I originally wanted it to be, but since I've never stretched mozerella before--I wasn't quite sure when to stop.
I added Herbs de Provence and a bit of salt to it before I started stretching and it's got a really nice flavor.
I'm excited to make polenta tomorrow with my spaghetti sauce and melt the cheese on top of it.
I'm even more excited for summer to come and I can make a pasta or pizza dish made entirely from scratch and the only thing that didn't come from my hands was the wheat flour.
I'll probably make another batch to freeze and move on to something like a farmhouse cheddar. I'm going to have to be concerned about the temperature and humidity and cheese caves. I don't actually have a cheese cave right now.
I hate to start looking for a cheese cave right now since I don't know how much I'm really going to get into this cheese stuff. I may be able to make do with part of the basement that isn't insulated until this summer. Then I'm going to have to worry. The next cheese I try are all going to be 2-6 months before I actually can see if they work.
Cooking has become so much easier now that I'meating mostly a plant-based diet. Breakfast and lunches are so much less of a hassle. Like this week--Breakfasts are home-made yogurt, hemp seeds, mixed berries, and some protein powder. Lunch is mashed garbanzo beans, grilled onions and peppers, garlic, yogurt, curry powder and spices rolled up in a lettuce leaf. Snacks are wasabi deviled eggs with a side of snap peas.
I can save my Mad Scientist in the Kitchen for dinners. Really, tho', I'm becoming more mad scientist with the vegetarian parts of my life. It's not that it is so much easier--it is that I'm not using a cookbook. Just throwing things together that sound good for at least 3 our of 4 meals a day and actually having success with it. I am not that confident when it comes to meat. But vegetables, grains, and beans? I don't feel like I can actually screw it up bad enough that I don't want to eat it.
It's becoming a way for me to really learn herbs and spices intuitively and by taste instead of my usual, "Uh, it needs something but I don't know what."
Tomorrow begins MY season of bike commuting. My season obviously starts when I decide to say, "Fuck it. Time to ride." regardless of what is happening outside. Overall, the temperature in the mornings are almost or over 40 degrees. I don't have the stones to do it when it is under 40-ish right now.
I wish I was looking forward to it, but I gotta admit--I'm sorta dreading it. It's going to be cold, dark, and probably raining. I'm sure I'll be golden as soon as I'm down the hill and can peddle and warm up a bit.
I'm not looking forward to the ride back home either just because my "bike legs" are non-existent right now and so is my lung capacity for riding back up the hill home. I'm sure by next month I'll wonder what the big deal was. It's just going to kind of suck between now and then.
I'm totally like Polly Sunshine, aren't I? I should be happy. I want to primarily get around by bike. I gotta bike to do that. It's a good thing.