April 10, 2009


This was going to be a back to back double-feature post, but then Emily ruined it by discovering that her laptop has a built-in SD card reader which made it easier to process her photos before I could finish typing everything up.  I'm still laughing though, because she went three months not knowing about it and transferring pictures with a cable.

This is the story of mascarpone, the second-fattiest food you can make from cream, besides pure butter.  I used instructions found here, but scaled up drastically due to my...bountiful...situation.
The first step was to heat the cream to 180F, which I did with one modification:  I used a heavy-bottomed frying pan as an additional heat defuser because I'm paranoid and dairy is vulnerable to scorching.  I couldn't find the candy thermometer, so I used our digital probe thermometer instead.

I prepped a mesh colander set over a bowl and lined it with gauze cloth:

That cream of tartar sure got measured!

After the cream hit 180F, I stirred in the acid, stirred some more, then poured into big bowls to cool in the fridge.

 The next morning, a little liquid had managed to strain through the cloth, and scraping the gauze off with a spoon produced little clots of proto-mascarpone.

Which I then put on my toast for breakfast.

Here is where I learned that cream is really thick for a liquid, and it takes a long time for the watery part to strain out from the fatty part.  It took several more days of scraping

and straining, and waiting...
Until I had something closer to the semi-solid that is mascarpone.  At this point, it resembled Greek yogurt, and I called it done because I was tired of scraping that stuff twice a day, and do you know how crusty gauze cloth gets when you leave it in the fridge for a week?  It's gross.

All in all, an interesting experiment was had and guess what, I have to do it all AGAIN because what you just saw was one quart of cream being processed, because that's all I could fit in the colander at once.  I still have the other quart from the initial boiling, waiting to be strained!  Hurrah!   Ugh.

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