The following are items that I use in my cheese making, these are just things I like to use and are my own choices.
Cheese Vat – I have two set ups
- My Electric Roaster Vat – I love this I can use up to 14 litres/3.5 Gallons of milk and I get consistent temperatures and it is easy to use
- My Double Boiler Vat – I also use a big stock pot and have a 20 quart/19 Litre Stainless Steel stock pot I make cheese with as well. Any pot will do as long as it is non-reactive i.e. stainless steel.
Equipment/Items – All utensils are either stainless steel or plastic, most can items you probably have at home already.
- Curd Knife – this is just a long cake spatula that works like a charm. It should be as long as your vat is deep. I would love to get a cheese harp, but I can’t find one I like.
- UnBleached Cheese Cloth – I go to a fabric store to buy mine or you can order synthetic cheesecloth online. The stuff you can get at the grocery store is too thin and will not hold up for multiple.
- Dairy Thermometer – This took me a while to find, but it was worth the hunt. A candy thermometer will not do the trick. I hold mine in my hand so I can take readings from all over the vat.
- Slotted Spoon/skimmer – This helps with stirring the curd and helping to disperse rennet
- Measuring cups and spoons – they don’t have to be fancy, just accurate.
- Colander – I found this one at a thrift store and it works like a charm and only cost me $1.
- Draining/Drying Mats – I use plastic cross stitch mats that I buy at a local craft store, make sure to sterilize them before use.
- Various Cheese Moulds – You can buy yours or make them as long as they are food safe.
- Cheese Press – Technically I have two. One is a hard wood top screw model that I was given for Christmas in 2010 and the other one that I bough and is a dutch style press.
- Draining/Drying Rack – This again is a new addition, it helps to get your cheese in a place that has good air circulation, also it allows you to place a bin under the rack so any whey can drain into it.
- Ripening Boxes (mini-caves) – these help you to control humidity and prevents cross contamination from mold ripened cheeses to your other ones.
I am probably forgetting some items, I will add to this as I go along.