Cheese press

home-made cheese press

Home-made cheese press

Originally, I started making cheese using a fruit press but the problem was that it didn’t apply a constant pressure and I would have to wait for the mass of curds to release the liquid before tightening the press further.

I therefore looked on Internet to see if there were any home-made versions and there were plenty. This one is easy to make and I found it on the Fiasco Farm website.

materials for the cheese press

Materials for the cheese press

To make the press, you need:
2 wooden boards measuring 30cm x 30cm
4 dowel rods (40cm long and 2cm diameter)
4 washers
4 stainless steel base supports
4 stainless steel screws
2cm drill spade bit
3cm drill spade bit

Drill 4 holes (3cm diameter) in each corner of one of the boards with the 3cm spade bit.
Drill another 4 holes (2cm diameter) in each corner of the other board with the 2cm spade bit. It is important that the holes match up.

Screw the base support on each of the lengths of dowel rod, with a washer between the rod and the screw.
I use the bottom part of my original fruit press to press the cheese and place 5kg weights on the press. For the first 30 minutes, I press the cheese with 5kg, for the second 30 minutes I use 10kg and for the final 30 minutes I use 15kg.

Base support

Base support

Making liquid detergent

I’d heard long ago about the benefits of block soap made from used olive oil and caustic soda, but had never heard about using oil to make liquid detergent that could then be used in the washing machine. It is apparently amazing and will get through the toughest of stains.

Last weekend when we were round at the neighbour’s house, his sisters had decided to make some so I helped so that I could see how it was done.

You will need a container that can take 50 litres and a stick for stirring. It is important to stir constantly, in the same direction.

Basically, the idea is to warm 1 litre of water. You then add 1kg of caustic soda. It is important not to let the water get too hot or it will bubble over.

Pour the used 1 litre of used oil into the large container.

Add the soda and the other ingredients:
2 litres of softener
6 litres of liquid detergent
1/2kg percarbonate whitener “blanqueador percarbonate”
40 litres of water

Stir gently until the liquid has cooled. The detergent can be transferred to containers immediately but shouldn’t be used for about 8-9 days.