As a cheese maker, you undoubtedly know about cleaning your kitchen surfaces and sterilizing your equipment.
(And if you don’t – or you have forgotten – then here is a quick recap).
But there is one other thing you might not know about – the cleanliness of the air.
Your cheese is susceptible to airborne bacteria and molds, which can instantly ruin it.
Here, we address how to combat this problem. But first, a reminder on kitchen hygiene at ground level…
Bleach is one of the best sanitizers. Use it at 75-120F.
You should mix 2 tablespoons of bleach to a gallon of water, to sanitize your tools in. Then rinse with water.
Cider vinegar, in particular, makes a very efficient sanitizer for your tools.
It can be sprayed undiluted onto them and allowed to dry in the air.
It can also be combined with tea tree oil, to make it even more potent.
Food Grade Sanitizers
We would recommend Star San as a food grade sanitizer. You can also use it for bacteria.
Cheap, as well as effective, it only requires two tablespoons per five gallons of water.
If you choose the heat method of sanitizing, you can use the oven, the microwave and dishwasher – to name but a few; to sanitize your equipment.
PETS AND CHILDREN
Remove children and animals from the kitchen, for the duration of the cheese making process.
Because of the risk from yeast, don’t bake any bread for thirty six hours prior to commencing cheese-making.
Also, refrain from brewing bear or placing meat on the counter you will work on.
NON STERILE ITEMS
We would advise the use of disposable towels and other cleaning equipment on the day you are making cheese, to avoid contamination.
To avoid allergens such as pollen or bacteria, as well as insects flying in, keep your windows shut during the cheese making process.
Especially if it is windy!
No matter how clean you get your kitchen counter and tools, it cannot stop airborne bacteria getting in and infecting your precious cheese.
We recommend that anyone really serious about their cheese making invests in a good HEPA air purifier. Cheese, can help spread molds and other allergens in your home, so a small air purifier that combats allergens and other small particles is a worthy addition to any kitchen or clean space.
It is important to get one which will effectively remove allergens, as well as other pollutants, including molds and bacteria.
For this reason, it really should be an air purifier with a HEPA filter.
Although a HEPA filter can help get rid of molds, bacteria and pet dander from your kitchen atmosphere, it is important to also treat the root cause of the problem.
If you have mold of any kind growing in your kitchen, you need to deal with it first before installing an air purifier.
Likewise, with animal dander, ensure that the pet is removed from the kitchen and a deep clean has been undertaken.
Then we advise the use of the air purifier, as a final step to achieve the air quality desired for your cheese making.
member, sanitize, banish and purify, to make your kitchen area – and the air – clean enough for cheese making.