When you first start home cheese making, it is easy to end up spending a lot of money on all the equipment you feel like you have to have to make great cheese. There are cultures and Rennet to buy, stockpots and thermometers, pH meters and curd knifes, cheese cloth and molds and a press for hard cheeses.
When I first started making hard cheeses I fashioned a cheese press out of all sorts of items. Filled stock pots of water, cans of food, rocks, anything that would give me enough weight to press the curds in the mold.
Eventually I got frustrated with the balancing acts (and the anxiety caused everytime said balancing acts didn’t work) and went looking for a proper press to upgrade my cheese making process.
I bought a press made by a local engineering student whose father is a cheesemaker.
The press works well but I found the mold that comes built into it is too wide in diameter, resulting in a larger flat cheese rather than a short stout one. The problem with larger flat cheeses is you end up with a lot more rind than paste as the drying area is bigger. Read more