I'm having major curdling issues with my mozz. I enjoy a well cooked/non stringy lightly brown specked cheese on my pie, but it seems that lately, right after my cheese starts to bubble, it starts to separate. I know Grande would probably solve my issues, but, besides requiring a 40 minute drive, it's about double what I normally pay for cheese. Maybe on special occasions, sure, but for the rest of the time, I need to find a way to work with my typical supermarket WM brick mozz.
It seems like if I use the mozz the very day I buy it, it usually melts nicely, but if I let it sit in my fridge for anything more than a few days, it goes slightly gooey and it's curdle city. I've tried every inexpensive brand in a 20 mile radius and, although some give me a little more shelf life than others, none of them are giving me longer than about 2 weeks.
Lately, I've been buying cheese that curdles on the day I buy it (extended storage at the store?).
Seeking out the firmest packages possible sometimes helps, but I have some brands that are both firm and curdle (and that are very white)
I've been brainstorming methods of giving my inferior cheese a fighting chance. Here's what I have so far:
1. Grate, sprinkle with a little starch (corn? arrowroot)- like the bagged shredded mozz manufacturers do with it. The starch, besides preventing clumping, should also act as a stabilizer and prevent curdling.
2. Based upon the premise that moisture is the enemy (is it?) grate, spread out on a sheet pan and dry in the fridge or
3. Grate, spread out on a sheet pan and gently dry in the oven (150?)
4. Removing Moisture From Fresh Mozz
(the thought of losing fat doesn't appeal to me, though).
5. Sodium citrate- the ingredient that use to make completely uncurdle-able American cheese
6. Baking Soda? If acid curdles cheese... should bases stabilize it? I'm not thinking sprinkling with baking soda- more along the lines of maybe spraying grated cheese with a weak baking soda solution and letting it dry.
I'm certain no one here has tried 5 or 6, and, most likely no one has tried any of these workarounds, but, just in case someone has, I wanted to run them by you. If anyone has any other ideas for preventing cheese curdling, feel free to chime in.