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Starting to stretch mozzarella

Stretching the mozzarella

Colonel's Blog, Earthdate 23 Jan 2023...

Hey Y'all!

Good Monday morning from Air2 Ground Farms! Today is going to be a busy day for Shelley and I. Shelley is going to Springfield this morning to pick up her parents who will be visiting for a week. I am going the opposite direction to take a lamb to the processor and pick up some Italian brats that took a bit longer to get finished from our last batch of hogs. Yesterday we were able to do things with cheese to include making about two pounds of mozzarella. What a cool experience! We heated the milk to 55 degrees, and added citric acid. We continued heating to 88 degrees, added rennet, and continued heating to 100 degrees. We then took it off the heat and let it sit for 5 minutes. After the time elapsed, we had gooey, stringy curds. We used a portion of the whey and brought it up to about 140 degrees and added salt. We separated the curds into baseball sized balls and dropped two into the hot, salted whey. This begins softening the balls of mozzarella and the process of heating and stretching begins. We continued this process for about 6-7 iterations until there were no more curds, just shiny stretchy mozzarella. We then put the balls of cheese into ice water to cool. The end result was mozzarella! We then used the whey from the mozzarella to make ricotta. The whey ricotta turned out to be more like what you buy at the store than what we have been making, which has more of a feta texture. We also made a gallon and a half of yogurt. So we used about 3 1/2 gallons of milk. We brought 5 gallons into the house yesterday. So although we worked all afternoon we went slightly backwards in our milk department. To alleviate this issue, we put 3 gallons into the hog and poultry feed. They all love it and it is really good for them.

I will take a wether lamb to the processor today. A wether is a castrated ram lamb and any sheep less than 1 year old is considered a lamb. So he is a full-size sheep but is considered a lamb. This is our first lamb to be processed and we are eager to see the result. We think there is a market for lamb in our area of the country and hope to be able to start having pasture raised lamb for sale on a regular basis. This guy is grass-fed only. We use alfalfa pellets to supplement the hay during the winter months to give a pure grass raised product. If you are familiar with the Yellowstone TV series, I took a rooster 'to the train station' yesterday. If you aren't familiar, one of our roosters took a one-way trip to the bone pile yesterday. He was growing ever increasingly more aggressive towards people and that is not an acceptable behavior from any of the animals on our farm. Every animal must be at least tolerant of the humans and this one wasn't. So, he can't live here anymore. #farmlife!

Local Farm Report for 22 Jan 2023:


25 Chicken eggs

8 Duck eggs

5 Gallons of milk



Farm subtractions:

1 Buff Orpington rooster

Cheers! Rich & Shelley

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Jan 23, 2023

It sounds like y'all are a very busy family.Glad to read about all you are doing.Love you.

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