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Category: DIY Projects & Instructions

Priscilla

Priscilla – the name tells the story. She’s the undisputed Queen of the coop 🙂


Chicken Coop

Last two week’s big project is finally done! I made a chicken coop in the back yard and now I’m waiting for some chickens to move in! Living in a rather rural area, I took great pains in creating an as much as possible predator-proof construction.


New Approach to Hydroponic Growing – Part I

As the last try with the hydroponic tower system failed completely and I’m not willing to give up the idea itself, I tried a new approach. This time it’s a more standard horizontal construction, capable of holding 24 net cups in 4 “stories”. Construction was cheap and easy enough – the most time consuming thing was letting the paint dry. I’m waiting now for my seedlings to grow big enough to be placed into the tubes.

 


Cider done! Taste Test.

(This is part IV of the cider making series. Read part I, part II and part III here.)

I tested my apple cider for the first time after letting it mature for almost eight weeks – it’s amazing what you can do with a load of apples, a little work and some time. It tastes good and refreshing, it definitely has some alcohol (7% vol. as per calculation) and a nice color.

It is a little acidic, not really sour but rather with a sour-ish hint. Next time I’ll not use “some apples” that I can get hands on but I’ll try to select some really sweet and ripe ones. Other than that: Great! I’m very pleased.


Knife Tang Hole Filer

I made a tang hole filer for my next knife project to come. Just drilling and working with a needle file is not very satisfactory. I used a jigsaw blade that I trimmed down a little, some scrap wood and a dab of epoxy glue. Done.


Tabletop Grill in Action

So we caught the weekly allowance of two hours of sunshine the german weather gave us today and used it to finally try out the tabletop grill. It works well and the insulation at the bottom is very effective – no particularly strong downward heat development, so it seems to be safe to use right at the table. Fotos:


Codsworth Cheese

CodsworthYay, my first cheese is ready! The Codsworth I made about a month ago is done ripening and ready to serve!

I don’t know if everything I did went the correct way, and I certainly don’t know if it tastes even rudimentarily like a proper “Cotswold” since I never had one before. But it definitely is flavourful and – yes – even a little hearty. It does have a hint of a sourly note, not unpleasant but noticeable. It goes well with bread and salad and a drop of olive oil and some pepper also fit it well. I’ll also try it melted in some oven baking recipe.

Until now, nobody got a bad stomach from it and everybody found it at least pleasant enough 🙂


Cheesecurd Stirrer

The last cheesemaking experiment seems to have worked out beautifully as far as I can see. But now, another recipe that I want to try calls for stirring the curds gently but consistently for 45 minutes straight – all my love for cheese aside, I won’t do that. That’s why I made a cheesecurd stirrer:

 

The principle is stolen from the concept of a wort stirrer for beer making that I knocked together years ago, but this time I wanted it not to stir circularly but to stir vertically. As you can see, the construction is easy, the motor is a 12V low-speed-motor from eBay, the rest is scrap from the shop.

The result can be admired above, I’m dying to try it in reality so I’ll have to go get some fresh milk next week 🙂


Cheese Making

I got an ebook on cheese making for free recently, but honestly, I don’t think it was much of a highlight. Nonetheless, I tasted blood from it and additionally bought myself this book which is much more informative and educational (that guy has an awesome YouTube channel too).

Subsequently, I made a cheese press a couple of days ago and wanted to put it to use now. The first try was a “Cotswold” cheese (seems to be a region in southern great britain that I’ve never heard of before), but as an old Fallout 4 addict, of course I named my version “Codsworth” 🙂


Cheese Press

This guy has too much free time at his hands… 🙂 I made a cheese press, because I was offered an eBook on cheesemaking – for free! Well, I like cheese in almost all of its forms, so I’ll try that out. Here’s how it was made and how it’s supposed to work.


 

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