There was some left over cream (okay, 3 liters…) so today I decided to make mascarpone. It didn’t turn out the way I thought it would, and it took a LOT longer than (based on recipes I looked at first) it should have. I’m not exactly sure what happened, whether I did one of the substitutions wrong, or whether the recipe missed an important step, but in the end it worked!

Basically, this is what happened. I made the cheese according to directions, with subsitutions, and NOTHING happened. I even strained it to see if maybe there was something I missed, and nope. There was nothing even CLOSE to resembling cheese, let alone what I SHOULD have had…
So, I re-tried it after going over my math again and realizing I forgot to carry the one. (Actually, the recipe was for 2 pints, I did 4 and forgot to double it…). So, I re-heated and doubled the acid. Still NOTHING. So, I went to look for recipes to use what I had left so it wasn’t a complete waste. I found one. Now remember, I now have the proper amount of acid in the cream. So, as per the recipe I reheat the cream (back to the same temperature as before), and VOILA! Curds! Little tiny, creamy curds…just like the ORIGINAL recipe said I should have! Nothing from the ‘new’ recipe added. It worked on the reheating alone.

I’m not going to give a recipe for this one just yet. I want to do it again to figure out exactly what went wrong. Was it the substitution that was wrong (the second time), was the recipe wrong about when to take it off the heat, was it a combination of the two?

I do however have pictures!

Heat Cream

First step in almost every cheese recipe is to heat the milk or cream.

To make life easier, get yourself a small L-bracket and clip that won’t melt. Bend the L-bracket so that the thermometer doesn’t hang straight down. If it still doesn’t hit the middle of the pan (or near it) hang the cord, or part of the lead through the clip.

CURDS!
Finally, the curd starts to form. Generally at this stage in cheesemaking you let the curd set up for a while. In this case, 30 minutes.

DRAINING

Drain the cheese for an hour or so, then continue draining in the fridge for a few more (up to 12) hours. Then, enjoy!

I’ll post the recipe once I figure out what I did ‘wrong’.

Bob

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