I live in a suburb of Philadelphia but I work about an hour north of the city. This area is rural and it's easy to find fresh milk and vegetables, but finding a local source of cheese and yogurt has been more of a challenge.
I started thinking about trying to make my own cheese about a year ago, but it look the Urban Farm Handbook Challenge to motivate me to try it.
The monthly challenge for Februray was Soil Building. I spent some time learning more about how to prep the soil in my raised beds and built a temporary compost bin. It was an inexpensive, fast way to get my pile started (I had one of those black plastic towers at my old house.) Later this year I plan to construct a multi-bin system.
This month the challenge is Home Dairy. Besides the Urban farm Handbook I also purchased another book Home Dairy by Ashley English from the Homemade Living Series. I have to say I love this book. The recipes are simple, straight forward and easy to understand.
Before making cheese I needed to buy a few cheese making supplies:
I decided to try to make mozzarella first. It was much easier than I thought it would be.
I used 1 gallon of fresh local milk and ended up with good sized piece of mozzarella. I also made some ricotta from the whey that was left over from the process.
This is the harder type of mozzarella. Not the type that is softer and in a brine.
Perfect for making pizza!