In this blog, we will answer the question “Does fresh mozzarella melt in sauce?”, while also comparing mozzarella to different types of cheese. We will discuss what types of sauce recommend the usage of mozzarella and storage instructions on how to preserve fresh mozzarella.
Does fresh mozzarella melt in sauce?
Mozzarella cheese does not completely melt in any sauce to form a smooth liquid consistency. This type of cheese will melt, but still retain some of its solid form, so it is not recommended to be used to make cheesy sauces.
What is Fresh Mozzarella?
Mozzarella is an Italian cheese made from buffalo or cow’s milk. Fresh Mozzarella is white when made, but turns into a light yellowish hue after being seasoned, depending on the animal’s diet. It is also generally served a day after being produced.
Mozzarella has a high moisture content. This means that it needs to be consumed quickly, such as within a week of production. Low moisture mozzarella is also available, which has a shelf life of about 1 month if kept refrigerated and in a vacuum-sealed bag or container.
Some low moisture shredded mozzarella packs can be found in stores, having a shelf life of up to 6 months.
Fresh Mozzarella is usually rolled into a ball of 80 to 100 grams (2.8 to 3.5 oz) or about 6 cm (2.4 in) in diameter, and sometimes up to 1 kg (2.2 lb) or about 12 cm (4.7 in) diameter. It is soaked in salt water, whey, or citric acid to preserve it for a short period of time.
When twisted to form a plait, mozzarella is called Treccia. Mozzarella is also available in smoked and reduced-moisture, packaged varieties.
How do different types of cheese melt?
- For cheeses like Mozzarella or Brie, which are soft and high-moisture, melting occurs at about 130°F.
- As for aged, low moisture cheeses, such as Cheddar and Swiss, around 150°F temperature is needed to melt the cheese properly.
- 180°F is needed for hard, dry grating cheeses like Parmigiano-Reggiano.
Why doesn’t mozzarella melt?
Several factors affect how the cheese melts in general, such as the moisture content of the cheese, how long it has been aged, the fat content, the type and build of protein present in the cheese, and its acidity.
All of these factors contribute to the fact that when melted, fresh mozzarella is very stringy and still rather solid-like. It does not at any stage form a liquid consistency. In comparison, Cheddar cheese melts smoothly and uniformly, making it much more suitable for sauces that require the cheese to be fully incorporated.
What are some tips to melt cheese better?
If the cheese is frozen, allow it to sit out for a while and come back to room temperature before starting the heating process. Heating up frozen cheese will result in the fat getting released too quickly, giving the cheese a greasy and clumpy texture.
Rather than heating up an entire block of cheese, it is better to grate the cheese into uniform pieces that will melt at the same time. While melting, the cheese should not be stirred too much, as this will cause it to reform into a solid mass.
It is also recommended to use low heat when melting cheese, giving it time to gradually heat up. Adding cheese into an already boiling hot liquid will be too quick of a temperature change and the cheese will release its oil.
When making liquids that contain cheese such as fondues, sauces, and soups, adding lemon juice helps keep cheeses melted and smooth. This is because the acidity of the lemon juice will prevent the cheese protein from clumping back together and allow it to stay separated, even after being cooled.
Mozzarella is a type of stringy cheese because of its inherent properties. For this reason, it is not a good choice for a sauce ingredient, as it will never achieve that liquid form.
What can be made with Mozzarella?
Here is a list of some truly mouth-watering recipes that perfectly compliment the salty, stringy cheese that is Mozzarella:
- Caprese Salad
- Cheesy Garlic Bread
- Spinach and Mozzarella egg bake
- Mozzarella Cheese Sticks
Other FAQs about Mozzarella that you may be interested in.
In this blog, we answered the question “Does fresh mozzarella melt in sauce?”, while also comparing mozzarella to different types of cheese. We discussed what types of sauce recommend the usage of mozzarella and storage instructions on how to preserve fresh mozzarella.