This ever-popular variant to traditional mozzarella is a welcome treat for any table. Fior de latte, made with regular cows milk, has become a popular variant when buffalo milk is not available.
For the best fior de latte, it is best to use quality non-homogenised milk, sold in the supermarket or grocery stores.
How to make Fior di Latte
Makes 4 large cricket-ball size, 8 plum-size or 16 small bocconcini-style fior di latte.
Fior de Latte Ingredients
5gm citric acid
4 litres unhomogenised milk
0.5 ml liquid rennet
1 tbsp salt flakes, crushed
Fior de Latte Method
Place the citric acid and 30ml warm water in a small bowl and mix to combine. Set aside. Place the milk in a large non-reactive saucepan over medium heat and heat to 37°C.
When the milk is 37°C, remove the pan from the heat and add the citric acid. Stir to combine. Mix the rennet and 30ml water together and add the mixture to the milk. Set aside untouched for 20-30 minutes or until curds start to form. (You will know that the curds are forming when there is a tofu-like substance on the surface of the pan. These are the curds separating from the liquid whey which will be underneath.)
Using a sharp clean knife, or pallet knife, cut the floating curds into 2cm pieces. Pour 1½ cups (375ml) boiling water over the curds and set aside for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. The boiling water increases the temperature of the curds to approximately 39°C, allowing them to firm.
Line a large colander with muslin. Carefully place the curds in the muslin and set aside to strain untouched for 30 minutes. Gently press on the curds to release any excess liquid.
Place the curds in a large heat-proof bowl, cut into 3cm pieces and sprinkle with salt. Pour over enough boiling water to cover the curds and start moving them around with a wooden spoon, until they start to stretch and combine.
Set aside a bowl of iced water. Put on gloves and dip your hands into the iced water. Pick up the curds and stretch them by hand for 3 minutes, until smooth and just flexible. (You don’t want to overwork the curds as they will firm on cooling and might become tough.)
Using your hands pinch off parts of the curds and lower into the second bowl of water. Store the fior di latte in clean containers with slightly salted water for up to three days.