It always bothered me as a home cheesemaker that there wasn’t an easier way to control temperature and humidity for my aging cheeses. I don’t live in the countryside with a built-in cheese cave. I can’t dig a root cellar on my property. I don’t even have a basement. When I decided I wanted to age cheeses, I needed to find a way to keep them cool (but not refrigerator-cold) and increase humidity so they didn’t dry out.
Then, a couple years later, after we had been making fresh sausages successfully, James and I wanted to add salami to our repertoire. But what we had cobbled together for aging cheeses wasn’t exactly ideal for drying sausages. As we started to research what we would need, we realized to what lengths individuals were going to create their own curing chambers. I am terribly un-inclined when it comes to mechanics, and the thought of constructing one of these chambers on my own intimidated me.
Thankfully, I have a husband who (1) isn’t afraid of putting things together and (2) sees business opportunities everywhere he looks.
The Cave: The one thing you need to age cheeses or dry cure meats
James and I dreamed up the idea of the Cave because we had a real problem. We had all these things we wanted to do, but the environmental conditions weren’t right. For cheesemaking, salami-making, and dry curing meats, you need three things. You need (1) cool temperatures, (2) high humidity, and (3) a little bit of airflow for even drying. So, we created the Cave. The Cave delivers on all three accounts. The Cave makes it easy to ferment anything right in your own home. The hardest part of aging a cheese or making a salami used to be finding the right environmental conditions. Now? Not a problem.
We figured that if we were in need of an easy way to control these conditions, others were looking for the same solution. We’ve been working in conjunction with Veenema Design Works for the last two years to get the Cave onto market and into your home. We’ve been designing, product testing, and improving the Cave to make it as versatile and functional as possible. And now, we’re ready to unveil our product and make it available to you.
Want to skip to the good stuff? You can check out pre-orders of the cave right now on Kickstarter. Click here!
How does the Cave work?
The Cave is a unit that can be installed on your refrigerator or freezer. Installation is so easy, that even I could do it. Once it’s installed, you plug in your refrigerator into the back of the unit. The Cave will control when the refrigerator turns on or off, or whether the heater should be turned on. The Cave can heat up to 110F, or cool to as low as your refrigerator will allow. It also has a USB port in case you want to add a humidifier.
The Cave gives you complete flexibility. You can use it with an existing refrigerator or freezer of whatever size you desire. You can pick whatever temperature or humidity level you want and the Cave will manage those conditions for you. And it gives you the option of wireless controls, so that you can schedule changes in advance, or make them while you’re on the go. Or just check in on your salamis while you’re out of town for the weekend to make sure the temp and humidity are where you want them.
The Cave will only grow with you.
This is not a tool that you will outgrow. You can use the Cave as a beginner fermenter, but it’s also a product that will grow right alongside you. The Cave gives you such an enormous range of flexibility, that you can use it for almost any fermenting project that you dream up.
If you’re like me, and you don’t have access to a root cellar or an actual cave built into the side of the hill, then the Cave really is the one thing you need to age cheeses or dry cure meats successfully. Here’s what we use our Cave for: