Mixing mozzarella without clumping

JWiley
  • Mixing mozzarella without clumping JWiley

    Whenever I use mozarella in a pasta dish, and attempt to mix it in like you would cheddar or anything else, I end up with one giant clump of mozzarella. Ex) I cook some pasta, and add the cheese/milk right after draining and attempt to mix.

    Is there a way to thoroughly mix this hardheaded cheese?

  • You need to add in your cheese in small quantities and stir after each addition.

    I'm not sure what you're making, but you could make a cream sauce prior to mixing the pasta with milk/cream, cheese and butter. Again, though, you'll want to add the cheese in small quantities and ensure that it's incorporated before adding another batch.

  • Your cheese is clumping like oil and water.

    Okay, it is perhaps oversimplifying slightly, but this is the basic issue--your cheese is made of, essentially, fat and protein (assuming you're using low-moisture mozzarella). The fat and water repel each other, meaning breaking up that ball of cheese is like trying to mix oil throughout a pot of water--it's going to tend to clump together.

    What you need is an emulsifier, an agent that will act as a liaison between the cheese and the water to turn it into one smooth mixture. When making sauces, your go-to emulsifier is starch. This is actually quite handy because when you're making pasta you have starch in abundance! When you're done boiling your pasta, just take a bit of the water and add it to your cheese and pasta. With a little mechanical action, you'll see it all turn smooth and even before your eyes.

    As far as how much to add--well that depends on how much pasta, how much cheese, how starchy your water is, etc. What I often do is drain my pasta over a bowl, add a ladle-full of water back to my cheesy sauce with the pasta, and stir for a few seconds. It will quickly become clear whether it is mixing well or whether I'll need more water.

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