1. It's a rare skill. Making your own cheese is the culinary equivalent of building a log cabin. There just aren't that many people who know how to do it anymore. A homemade cheese will always be a hit at a potluck or party.
2. Homemade cheese contains no artificial ingredients. Almost every commercial yellow or red cheese contains a food coloring called annatto. Although annatto is “natural” (it's derived from a South American tree) it has been linked to allergic reactions. Commercial cheeses also often contain a form of rennet that is genetically modified from fungi. If you're trying to stay away from GMOs, you might consider buying from an artisan or making your own.
3. It's easy! There are a few basic steps to cheesemaking, and they are the same no matter what kind of cheese you want to create. Once you have mastered those steps, you can make anything, from brie to mizithra.
4. Homemade cheese connects you to your farmer, the cows, and the land. As you begin to make cheese, you will naturally seek out the best milk for your product. You will ask questions, talking to farmers and other cheese makers. While you can make cheese without ever meeting a cow, knowing your sources is so much more fun!
5. It's inexpensive. Unlike other hobbies you don't need a lot of fancy supplies to make cheese. A large pot, a kitchen thermometer, a couple pieces of cheesecloth, and a few cultures will get you started onto the path toward years of delicious fun.
6. Children love it. Kids love to make cheese. Kids love to eat cheese. If you have children, cheesemaking is a great kitchen activity. They can participate and learn along the way. If you homeschool, cheesemaking is a unique way to teach science and chemistry.
7. It's delicious! No matter what kind of cheese you make, your homemade cheese will be edible. Some of the most fabulous, rare cheeses were discovered by accident. Even if you think you've messed up your cheese irreparably, drain, salt, and try it anyway. You may not ever be able to repeat it, but you can still enjoy eating it.