I store citric acid but I think I’m going to get some more. I get mine from my food co-op. I t comes in nice little mylar bags and it’s one of those inexpensive things with a ton of uses. I use it to set color when dehydrating, to increase acidity in my tomato sauce when canning, in winemaking and in cheese making. I get mine from my food co-op. It comes in dandy little mylar bags and stores about forever. It takes up very little room and it’s lightweight.

I got to thinking about citric acid because I made cheese this weekend. I have a standing order for a gallon of raw milk each week. Raw milk makes the best yogurt and cheese ever. I made mozzarella this time. The process is so easy. I warm a gallon of milk to 55 degrees and add 2 teaspoons citric acid powder dissolved in a 1/4 cup cool water. now bring the temperature up to 105 degrees and add 1/4 rennet tablet dissolved in 1/4 cup cool water. stir very gently until the curds separate from the whey. This will take about 3-4 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and ladle the curds into a microwave safe bowl. Pour off they whey, then microwave on high for 1 minute. Knead the cheese (I use a couple of wooden spoons but you can use heat proof gloves too) them microwave again for 35 seconds. Add a teaspoon of salt and microwave for 35 seconds, then pour off the whey. The cheese should be like taffy in texture. Don’t toss out the whey. My chickens love it and I use it in bread baking.

We ate ours with a couple of our last tomatoes, french bread and olive oil. Bruce ate 3 and he’s not a big eater. I’m going to try to increase my order to 3 gallons a week of raw milk. At this rate, a Jersey seems like a good idea.

I made bread with the whey. The loaf was very dense and rich. Actually, last night’s meal was amazing. I made pierogies, carmelized onions with oyster mushrooms in a sherry cream sauce, apple sauce, pickles and butternut squash. We had cider to drink. Nearly everything came from my backyard. This is my favorite time of the year, food wise. The butchering  has been done so the freezer is full; the root cellar is overflowing and the pantry sparkles with the colors of summer. I never forget to be grateful.

A busy week lies ahead. Most of my kids will be home for the holiday, then we have our potlatch on Saturday. It is a pure pleasure to know that I have no obligations that require travel. As the days get shorter and the cold weather settles in, my chair by the stove in the living room is favorite place to be.