Making Cheese Miracles

Making Cheese Miracles

A recipe works in print. Yes, ingredients. Hello, exact measurements–they’re easy in bold black type. They make sense in the curves of familiar letters, spaces, numerals. They are, in text, brimming with hope and potential. Often, however, in practice, they’re messier. Tenuous. Victims to countless variables. The weather. The moisture in your fingertips. The precision of well-worn tools. Recipes go wrong for any number of reasons. The more complex a recipe, the more opportunity for error.

I knew I had to tackle VegNews‘ recipe for vegan buffalo mozzarella at first glance. But I was very skeptical. Ice baths? Agar? Cheesecloth? Many unfamiliar areas here. But I am happy to announce the recipe worked like a charm. And I am now the happy owner of many-a ball of submerged buffalo mozzarella. Here’s a photo rundown…

Soy yogurt is the start. It sits straining on cheesecloth for 24 hours.

Soaked cashews come into play as they often do in quality vegan cheese-making.

More wait time. 8 hours as mixture tangs up.

Big jump in steps here as I had no free hand. After yogurt mixture has the proper tang, it gets added to a mixture of boiling water and agar. Once it is properly gloppy, an ice cream scooper does the rest. A glop submerged and released into an icebath.

The balls are the spot-on texture of, well, cheese! I was a bit shocked myself.

It slices. It springs back. It’s vegan buffalo mozzarella.

Still a bit shocked. Now what am I going to do with all this cheese.

I’ll have to think on that!