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Why Does Mozzarella Melt So Easily?

Chances are if you have ever had a pizza, you have eaten mozzarella cheese as it is the most commonly used cheese for this food. But this isn’t the only dish that involves melted mozzarella and that is no surprise considering the great taste and ease associated with melting the cheese. When compared to other cheeses, it sometimes seems as if mozzarella melts a lot easier but instead of understanding why, most people just take advantage of this fact and use the melted version in recipes. If you want to know why this cheese melts so easily, then it all comes down to its structure.

Type Of Melt

Before completely understanding why mozzarella melts so easily, it is important to understand what type of melting cheese it produces. In general there are several different consistencies that you can get from melted cheese: stretchy and stringy, smooth and flowing and ones that don’t melt. If you have ever worked with mozzarella, then you know it is a stretchy and stringy cheese when melted. This means that when you melt it, it can make long strings (thing of the stringy melted cheese on your pizza) and will generally stay where they are, making them great for sandwiches and pizza.

The Moisture

So we mentioned that the reason mozzarella melts so easily is because of its structure, but what exactly does that mean. It comes down to the fact that when you make mozzarella at a high pasteurization temperature, the cheese will have more moisture which means that you need to be careful with it as it will melt easily, giving it a higher risk of burning. At the same time, the moisture is part of what gives it the melted consistency that we have grown to love. One thing to remember when cooking your mozzarella, however, is that if you cook it at higher temperatures, there will be less moisture.

Other Factors

The moisture is just one of the factors that cause mozzarella to melt so easily. If you want to use mozzarella that melts easily, it is best to avoid reduced fat cheese as this will have more protein content. This in turn means that the cheese is harder to melt so if you plan on melting your mozzarella, stick to the full-fat version. You will also notice that cheese made with a bulk starter culture will melt better because of the increased microbial activity. Another way to make your mozzarella melt even more easily is to increase the time it is stored in refrigeration as this will help it develop more which in turn helps with melting.

How Do You Do It?

Now that you know why mozzarella cheese melts so easily, it is a good idea to know the best way to melt it. Ideally you should use a double boiler (or make your own using a small pot and a large pot). Shred the cheese and put it in the top part of the double boiler. Then fill the bottom with water halfway putting the heat on medium high. Put the top part (with the cheese) on top of the bottom part and stir it frequently while it melts. You should have melted mozzarella in no time.

Jet M Perreault